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Overview

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Overview clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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Following the EU referendum in 2016 and the 2017 UK election results, concerns regarding potential changes to UK employment laws derived from EU statute remain at the forefront. Work arising from the Modern Slavery Act and Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SMCR) is emanating not only from the financial services sector, but also in other sectors. In March of 2017, the government extended SMCR requirements dictating that employers must now report on disciplinary actions as well as the date of hire. Law firms have also experienced an increase in mandates surrounding Gender Pay Gap Reporting obligations, which came into force in April 2017.

In addition to ongoing activity arising from whistleblowing claims and restrictive covenant matters, employment-related mandates regarding the β€˜gig economy’ have been a strong focus among law firms following recent Employment Tribunal claims brought against major logistics businesses such as Uber, Addison Lee and Deliveroo; Addleshaw Goddard, Mishcon de Reya LLP, DLA Piper and Fieldfisher have all been active for employers in related matters, with Leigh Day and Bates Wells Braithwaite acting on the employee side.

Immigration remains a topical subject, particularly among EU nationals and businesses with a workforce comprised predominantly of EU nationals. Firms report that growing uncertainty over the rights of EU nationals post-Brexit have led to many individuals choosing against entering the UK. In addition to the implementation of the Tier 2 salary threshold increase in April 2017, the government has also introduced a related Β£1,000 Immigration Skills Charge for every worker on the Tier 2 route.

The introduction of the Pensions Schemes Act 2017 in April has produced a new authorisation regime for master trusts that provide defined contribution benefits, which some firms speculate may result in the closure of a number of existing master trusts. There has also been a significant push in the defined contribution and benefits market towards consolidation and the creation of larger schemes. The government recently launched a consultation in February 2017 to review current executive incentive schemes in order to meet public approvals. Pensions lawyers have also noted a steady stream of work from overseas investors entering the market. On the employee share schemes front, there has been notable growth in tax compliance mandates arising from increased enforcement.

The introduction of the 2016 Health and Safety Sentencing Guidelines has led to significantly larger fines being handed down for health and safety breaches, as well as a substantial increase in the prosecution of individuals, which has led to a growth in custodial sentences.


Employee share schemes

Index of tables

  1. Employee share schemes
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Employee share schemes clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

Allen & Overy LLP’s practice is very highly rated in all areas of share schemes and incentives, including employee equity incentives and executive remuneration. Well-regarded practice head Paul McCarthy has been leading advice to 21st Century Fox on the incentives aspects of its Β£11.7bn acquisition of a 61% stake in Sky; and also advised TUI on incentives matters related to its sale of Hotelbeds Group to private equity investor Cinven and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. The team includes senior associate Louise Batty, who has experience acting for both domestic and overseas clients on a broad range of share scheme matters, including the cross-border implementation of incentive arrangements.

The β€˜supportive’ share schemes and incentives group at Clifford Chance LLP β€˜has tremendous strength, depth and technical expertise’. Headed by the β€˜outstanding’ and β€˜formidable’ Sonia Gilbert, the group primarily advises FTSE 100 clients, covering transactional support and remuneration regulatory matters. Gilbert advised Sainsbury’s on a number of matters relating to its Β£1.4bn acquisition of Home Retail Group, including exit packages for directors and senior managers. Senior associate Liz Pierson assisted NEX Group in relation to the incentives aspects of its Β£1.1bn demerger and disposal to Tullett Prebon. Other clients include Barclays, RBS and Babcock International.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP’s β€˜highly recommended’ team regularly advises on the incentives aspects of high-value M&A transactions, as well as acting in litigation concerning share schemes. Team co-head Simon Evans has been leading advice to Ferroglobe on governance and executive remuneration issues across multiple jurisdictions. Co-head Alice Greenwell and Nicholas Squire advised Softbank on scheme arrangement issues relating to its Β£24.3bn takeover of ARM Holdings. Other clients include Pearson and Anheuser-Busch InBev.

Part of the firm’s wider corporate governance practice, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s β€˜responsive, proactive and commercial’ remuneration and incentives team specialises in acting for clients in the banking and financial services sector. Department head Paul Ellerman acted for Wesfarmers on the share plan aspects of its acquisition of Homebase from Home Retail Group. Mark Ife advised ClearBank, the UK’s first new clearing bank in more than 250 years, on equity arrangements concerning its launch in 2016. The team includes senior associate Bradley Richardson.

Linklaters LLP’s β€˜highly responsive, dedicated and well-informed’ share schemes practice regularly handles incentive matters with international elements, and has particular strength in the financial services sector. β€˜Experienced, insightful and great to work with’, practice head Alexandra Beidas advised Biffa on various incentive matters regarding its listing on the London Stock Exchange, including the introduction of new executive and employee share plans. The β€˜excellent’ Gillian Chapman advised Home Retail Group on multi-jurisdictional share issues relating to Sainsbury’s Β£1.4bn acquisition of the company. The team includes of counsel Graham Rowlands-Hempel and associate Cara Hegarty, who β€˜provides strong technical advice’.

β€˜Market-leading’ boutique firm Tapestry Compliance LLP advises on all aspects of executive and employee share schemes. β€˜Insightful, knowledgeable and reliable’ practice head Janet Cooper and Bob Grayson acted for Credit Suisse on various aspects of its global employee incentive scheme, including advising on tax matters and compliance. Grayson also assisted Dell in a global review of its incentive scheme following its merger with EMC Corporation. The firm’s international client base also includes Teva, Worldpay and Goldman Sachs.

With β€˜exceptional knowledge in the area’, Baker McKenzie’s team has particular strength in high-profile matters, including tax and senior executive remuneration issues. Team head Jeremy Edwards, who β€˜has encyclopaedic knowledge of his subject and is a pleasure to work with’, advised Coca-Cola Enterprises on cross-border share plan issues regarding its $31bn merger with Coca-Cola Iberian Partners and Coca-Cola ErfrischungsgetrΓ€nke into new UK company Coca-Cola European Partners. Edwards also assisted Smith & Nephew in relation to an annual share plan launch in over 30 jurisdictions, covering regulatory, compliance and tax issues. Clients also recommend Stephen Ratcliffe, senior associate Alasdair Friend and associate Gillian Murdoch, who has β€˜great expertise and responsiveness’.

Following its merger with Nabarro LLP and Olswang LLP, CMS boasts a β€˜very strong’ incentives group with β€˜a good international perspective’. Group head Nicholas Stretch advised Engelhart Commodities Trading Partners on tax and investment issues relating to the company’s spin-out from BTG. The β€˜excellent’ Andrew Quayle, who previously headed Olswang’s share schemes team, has been assisting Cineworld in matters including the implementation of a new long-term plan across seven European jurisdictions. Clients also recommend of counsel Catherine Merry, who is β€˜very pragmatic and responsive’; and Graham Muir, who led the incentives practice at Nabarro.

Hogan Lovells International LLP’s β€˜forthright’ department is noted for its β€˜good specialist knowledge’, and is well versed in transactional and share incentive matters, often with pensions components. Department head Paul Randall acted for SABMiller on matters including the employee share incentives aspects of the sale of its Peroni and Grolsch brands and other businesses to Asahi. Randall also advised Ascot Underwriting on remuneration issues concerning its $1.1bn sale by AIG to CPPIB. Of counsel Kiran Khetia and Tim Goggin are also recommended.

β€˜Excellent in all respects’, Slaughter and May’s team primarily advises on transactional matters, and has strong experience in restructuring and regulatory matters. Practice head Jonathan Fenn acted for Drax Group on the share options aspects of its Β£340m acquisition of Opus Energy Group; and was also instructed by Punch Taverns on the incentives aspects of its recommended Β£403m acquisition by Vine Acquisitions. Daniel Schaffer joined from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, while Roland Doughty has retired.

Part of the firm’s wider tax department, Travers Smith LLP’s employee incentives group specialises in transactional matters for a wide range of clients, including publicly traded and private equity backed companies. Group head Mahesh Varia, assisted by associates Kevin Donegan and Claire Prentice, advised Micro Focus on employee share schemes and executive remuneration matters related to its acquisition of Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s software business. Senior counsel Elissavet Grout advised Bridgepoint on share schemes vendor due diligence concerning its Β£835m sale of Oasis Dental Care to Bupa. Other clients include ZPG, PAM Group and SSP Group.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP’s team is β€˜very responsive, commercial and easy to deal with’, and is experienced in the implementation of new schemes and the incentives aspects of high-value transactions. Practice head Mathew Gorringe, who is β€˜extremely technically able and keen to understand businesses’ needs’, advised Chemtura on securities and tax issues regarding stock awards following its $2.7bn merger with Lanxess. The β€˜approachable’ Danny Blum assisted NewRiver in matters including the introduction of new employee share plans and remuneration policy issues in the context of the company’s move from AIM to the Main Market in 2016. Associates Victoria Green and Richard Sharman are also recommended.

Fieldfisher has a β€˜very thorough and diligent’ share schemes and incentives team notable for its experience in international matters. β€˜Excellent’ key partner Graeme Nuttall advised US-based life sciences company Arbor Assays on a cross-border employee ownership structure. Mark Gearing assisted US-based technology company Merkle in its acquisition of UK-based marketing agency DBG. The team also includes corporate partner Neil Palmer and senior associate Jennifer Martin.

Norton Rose Fulbright’s β€˜stellar’ benefits practice acts for clients in the financial services sector on a broad range of matters, including regulatory issues and the implementation of incentives plans. β€˜Smart, client-centred and proactive’ practice head Matthew Findley advised HSBC in relation to its share dealing code following the introduction of the Market Abuse Regulation; and was also instructed by Charles Stanley on the design and implementation of a new managers share plan. The team includes senior associates Ann Moseley and Andrew Roycroft. Deliveroo, Mercer and IMI are among the practice’s other clients.

The β€˜excellent’ share plan and incentives team at Pinsent Masons LLP has experience in senior executive remuneration matters, as well as other issues with international elements. β€˜Knowledgeable, solutions-oriented and professional’ team head Lynette Jacobs, who is β€˜a pleasure to work with’, recently acted for AMC on incentives issues concerning its $1bn acquisition of Odeon and UCI Cinemas Group, and advised Imperial Brands on its global share plan across 35 jurisdictions. Suzannah Crookes is also very highly rated by clients.

Simmons & Simmons’ β€˜approachable and commercial’ department specialises in assisting clients in the financial services sector in remuneration regulatory matters, counting Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Evercore and Mizuho Bank among its clients. Highly regarded department head Ian Fraser advised Old Mutual on management incentive rights in the context of the disposal of an asset management subsidiary; and also advised Sumitomo Rubber Industries on the employee incentives aspects of its acquisition by a UK distribution company, including designing and drafting retention arrangements. Associate Tair Hussain is also recommended.

The β€˜very good, comprehensive and practical’ group at White & Case LLP has β€˜a deep and broad global network that it taps into seamlessly and efficiently’. The group regularly acts for clients in the financial services and technology sectors, such as ABBYY, Brammer and ICG. β€˜Highly recommended’ group head Nicholas Greenacre assisted Avast Software on due diligence and other incentive plan issues regarding its $1.3bn acquisition of AVG Technologies. Greenacre, regulatory partner Stuart Willey and tax consultant Euan Fergusson advised Equatex on stock plan administration agreements, as well as cross-border tax and regulatory issues. The team includes associates Helen Levendi and Paul Harrington.

Addleshaw Goddard is regularly instructed on the implementation of new share plans, as well as transactional and regulatory matters. The team is headed by the β€˜technically excellent’ Jonathan Rogers, who joined from Abbiss Cadre LLP in 2016. Rogers has been acting for Dixons Carphone on various matters, including the implementation of a new long-term incentive plan and Market Abuse Regulation training concerning share dealings by directors. Rogers also advised Creston on incentive scheme issues related to its Β£75.8m cash acquisition by RedWhiteBlue Digital Marketing Services. Other clients include Lloyds Banking Group, Britvic and Ted Baker. Michael Carter is now at Osborne Clarke LLP.

The β€˜extremely good’ practice at Macfarlanes LLP β€˜provides good, solid advice’ across a broad range of share scheme issues and transactional matters. β€˜Technically capable’ practice head Rob Collard advised AccorHotels on complex incentive arrangement issues related to its acquisition of onefinestay; and advised Visa on outstanding awards under Visa Europe’s incentive plans following its acquisition of the latter. Also recommended is of counsel Ian Shaw, who has experience assisting both listed and unlisted clients on the share scheme aspects of M&A transactions, as well as advising executives on personal reward structures. Clients of the team include Liontrust, Wetherspoons and Brooks Macdonald. Andrew Loan is now of counsel at Fieldfisher.

Noted for its β€˜professional and very practical advice’ and β€˜excellent turnaround times’, Mayer Brown International LLP’s equity and incentive plans department specialises in private company arrangements. The department is led by consultant Andrew Stanger, who β€˜has an intimate knowledge of tax legislation’ and β€˜can always find a practical solution to complex structures’. Stanger recently advised office rental company Bizspace on the adoption of a management incentive scheme. Other clients include Interoute, Entertainment One and Intermediate Capital Group.

β€˜Excellent boutique firm’ Postlethwaite Solicitors Ltd is noted for its β€˜prompt and outstanding service’ across all aspects of share schemes, with particular expertise in employee ownership arrangements. β€˜Knowledgeable’ practice head Robert Postlethwaite β€˜provides clear, practical advice and solutions for his clients’, and recently advised Merlin Energy Resources on the design and implementation of an employee ownership succession scheme. He has also been advising Doctify on matters including new EMI option grants. The team includes David Reuben, who specialises in the employee incentives aspects of M&A transactions; tax expert Stephen Chater; and Judith Harris. Other clients include Soundcloud and Revolut.

As part of the firm’s wider tax practice, Shearman & Sterling LLP’s incentives group regularly advises on high-value M&A transactions. Recent highlights include advising Liberty Global on share scheme issues relating to its $8.2bn acquisition of Cable & Wireless Communications. Simon Letherman now heads the practice, following Sarah Priestley’s move to Goodwin.

Stephenson Harwood’s β€˜excellent’ team is β€˜very responsive’. It has been increasingly active for AIM-listed clients, such as Kalibrate Technologies, easyHotel and Milton Group. Practice head Barbara Allen is β€˜personable’ and β€˜an industry expert’, and recently advised Hotel Chocolat on the employee benefits aspects of its successful Β£167m flotation on AIM. Allen and senior associate Anika Chandra advised BTG on the extension of its employee sharesave plan to overseas jurisdictions, as well as on its obligations under the Market Abuse Regulation.

Taylor Wessing LLP’s β€˜solid, knowledgeable and approachable team’ regularly advises on the incentives aspects of high-value transactions, including EMI plans and tax issues. β€˜Excellent’ group head Ann Casey led advice to Outfit7 Investments on employee incentives matters involved in its $1bn takeover by United Luck Group Holdings; and advised onefinestay on cross-border incentives and tax issues relating to the Β£150m sale of its business to AccorHotels. Senior associate Anna Humphrey is also recommended.

Ashurst’s team is well versed in standalone work as well as the incentives aspects of transactional and restructuring matters. Highlights in 2016 included advising Siccar Point Energy on share scheme issues related to its $1bn acquisition of OMV. Of counsel David Baxter, who heads the practice following his arrival from consultancy Aon Hewitt, advised EnQuest on its existing schemes and related disclosure issues in the context of a major restructuring. The team includes associate Rebecca Servian.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP’s multidisciplinary group is noted for its β€˜clear, detailed advice’ and β€˜prompt responses’. Group head David Dennison, who is appreciated for his β€˜wealth of in-depth knowledge and practical advice’, advised AIM-listed company H&T on the implementation of a new company share option plan. Tesco, FairFX and Panmure Gordon are also clients.

Bird & Bird LLP’s incentives and benefits team is β€˜always available’ and β€˜has a very good depth of knowledge’. β€˜Excellent’ practice head Colin Kendon advised Nitro Digital on a growth share plan for all employees, involving complex valuation, regulatory, tax and reporting issues across a number of jurisdictions. Legal director Fleur Benns advised Alternative Networks on the employee incentives aspects of its Β£165m acquisition by Daisy Intermediate Holdings. Associate Dan Sharman is β€˜very approachable and pragmatic with his advice’, and β€˜a really good solution finder’.

With a β€˜very strong’ practice, Charles Russell Speechlys LLP’ team specialises in work for AIM-listed clients, such as Prime People, Pennant International Group and Alpha FX. β€˜Commercial and pragmatic thinker’ Martin Griffiths regularly advises clients on EMI share options and the incentives aspects of M&A transactions, including cross-border matters. James Carter heads the team, which includes Helen Coward and Nick Janmohamed.

Cooley (UK) LLP’s β€˜very responsive’ compensation and benefits practice β€˜provides great advice’ across a broad range of issues for public and private companies, with particular strength in cross-border matters. Practice head Paula Holland β€˜provides a great deal of help’, and recently advised Berkeley Group on complex amendments to its long-term incentives plan to comply with its new share buy-back policy. Holland and capital markets partner Ed Lukins have been advising AIM-listed company Tiziana Life Sciences on a new option plan that will cover a number of jurisdictions. Other clients include Journey Group, KalVista Pharmaceuticals and EFG Hermes.

The β€˜excellent’ multidisciplinary team at DLA Piper β€˜works hard to get issues resolved’. In Birmingham, senior associate Nick Hinton advised long-term client Dignity on the structuring and implementation of new senior executive and management arrangements, including a new deferred bonus plan and changes to the company’s Save As You Earn scheme to comply with regulations. Leeds-based associate Lynda Finan is regularly instructed on the incentives aspects of major transactions, and Manchester-based David Thompson is also a name to note.

Fox Williams LLP’s incentives team handles a wide range of share scheme matters, including advising on the implementation of new schemes and providing transactional support. The team is led by Emma Bailey, who is β€˜knowledgeable, very smart and an impressive operator’. Her recent work includes advising MinterEllison on a bespoke cross-border option scheme related to its AIM listing; and assisting QiO Technologies in the restructuring of an option scheme for senior management across a number of jurisdictions. Other clients include Personnel Hygiene Services (PHS), Adam Phones and Vigilent.

The share schemes department at Jones Day excels in acting for clients across a wide range of incentives matters, including those with an international element. Department head John Papadakis led advice to Stallergenes Greer on the implementation of a global long-term incentive plan for senior executives; and assisted Samhi Hotels in the restructuring and implementation of a global incentive plan, including compliance with Indian company law. The team includes tax partner Anthony Whall. Other clients include Hansteen Holdings, NewDay and LionsGold.

Latham & Watkins’ team has notable strength advising on cross-border matters for both international and domestic clients. London practice head Stephen Brown, who is also co-head of the firm’s global benefits, compensation and employment group, specialises in the incentives aspects of complex cross-border transactions, including tax matters. The team includes associates Sarah Gadd, Kendall Burnett and Lucy Boyle.

Lewis Silkin LLP’s group has experience in the incentives aspects of major acquisitions, as well as advising clients on regulatory issues involving HMRC. The group is jointly led by Sara Cohen and Victoria Goode, both of whom regularly advise on share schemes and related tax issues.

β€˜Extremely amicable, professional and a pleasure to work with’, Mishcon de Reya LLP’s β€˜very impressive’ share schemes and incentives team has experience acting for SMEs and large companies on a wide range of issues, including transactional support and litigation. Practice head Stephen Diosi, who is β€˜approachable’ and β€˜extremely knowledgeable’, has been leading advice to Merlin Entertainments on various strategic and global share plan matters, and also advised Clearsettle on the implementation of new executive and employee incentive arrangements. Also recommended is β€˜extremely professional, efficient and friendly’ associate Caroline Nye-Wilkins.

Osborne Clarke LLP’s share schemes team β€˜never falls short of excellence’. It was bolstered by the arrival of Michael Carter from Addleshaw Goddard; he has replaced Karen Cooper as practice head after Cooper’s departure to found Cooper Cavendish. Recent work for Carter includes advising Stagecoach Group on remuneration and share scheme issues, while associate Sue Hachmi and corporate partner Mark Wesker acted for Tribal Group on the incentives aspects of its delisting from the London Stock Exchange and subsequent AIM listing. The team includes associate Mairi Granville-George. Other clients include Provident Financial Group, Metal Tiger and Britvic.

Birmingham-based boutique Pett Franklin & Co. LLP covers all aspects of executive and employee incentives, corporate governance and share plans. The multidisciplinary practice is jointly led by chartered accountant William Franklin and Stephen Woodhouse. David Pett has left to join Temple Tax Chambers.

Shoosmiths LLP’s multidisciplinary team handles all aspects of share schemes and incentives matters, with particular expertise in tax issues. Kate Featherstone advised Thorntons on various issues relating to its sale to Ferrero, including employee incentive and employee benefit trusts due diligence. Fellow practice head Tom Wilde advised NVM Private Equity on a number of incentive arrangements, including EMI options, relating to its investment in Love Energy Savings. The team includes associate Tom Rank.

Wright Hassall LLP is regularly instructed by both UK and overseas clients on the full gamut of employee incentive matters; names include Holland & Barrett, Radiant Worlds and Elicyon. Practice head John Dormer continues to provide support to Wedlake Bell LLP on share incentive matters for a number of the London firm’s clients, with recent work including the implementation of a new plan and advice on EBT matters. The team was strengthened by the arrival of associate Sebastian Salt from Deloitte.


Employment: employees/unions

Index of tables

  1. Employment: employees/unions
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Employment: employees/unions clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

β€˜Pioneers in the field’, Bindmans LLP’s group β€˜combines innovation with pragmatism and strong client-care skills’. Practice head Shah Qureshi and Robert Maddox acted for a client in a whistleblowing and age discrimination claim brought against a major Dutch investment bank. Emilie Cole, (β€˜an excellent pair of hands on lengthy discrimination claims’) is acting for a district judge in a high-profile whistleblowing and disability discrimination claim brought against the Ministry of Justice regarding work conditions; the case is pending before the Court of Appeal. Associate Peter Daly, is acting for a former prosecutor for the European Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo (EULEX) on a whistleblower claim brought against EULEX; the case is now before the Employment Appeal Tribunal. Clients also recommend Shazia Khan.

A β€˜first port of call’ for many clients, Leigh Day’s department of β€˜savvy and aggressive litigators’ often handles high-profile group claims, with a particular strength in the technology sector. Practice head Chris Benson (an β€˜excellent tactician and creative lawyer’) and the β€˜very knowledgeable and intelligent’ Michael Newman represented more than 100 construction workers in a blacklisting claim against various companies. Associate Nigel Mackay represented a group of drivers in an Employment Tribunal claim brought against Uber regarding employment status. Associate Shubha Banerjee is representing more than 200 judges in age discrimination and indirect sex and race discrimination claims arising from changes to judicial pensions in 2015 which required younger judges to leave the scheme. Emma Satyamurti, Elizabeth George and the β€˜impeccable’ Nick Webster are also recommended. Kiran Daurka joined from Slater and Gordon.

Slater and Gordon’s team acts for employees and trade unions across the full gamut of contentious employment matters. Emma Hawksworth, whom clients β€˜can’t speak highly enough about’, is representing a client in a claim brought before the Supreme Court alleging indirect religious discrimination; the case has now been joined with Essop and Others v Home Office. The β€˜extremely professional, approachable and helpful’ Simon Cuthbert is advising a client on an appeal regarding whether police officers are able to bring claims for discrimination and whistleblowing before the courts following dismissals for misconduct. Practice head Edward Cooper and the well-regarded Paul Daniels and Clive Howard, who is often instructed by senior executives and other senior professionals, are also recommended.

Hodge Jones & Allen LLP’s practice acts for senior executives and other professionals on the full gamut of contentious employment matters, with notable expertise in sexual and racial harassment, unfair dismissal and maternity-related claims. Practice head Rhian Radia acts for clients across a wide range of sectors, including banking and healthcare. β€˜Very sympathetic and understanding’ senior associate Homa Wilson, who is β€˜always one step ahead of the game’, handles complex director disputes, acts in whistleblowing claims, and negotiates high-value settlements.

Pattinson & Brewer’s employment rights group acts for a range of trade unions, including the Police Federation. Key names include Anthea Christie, whose experience encompasses discrimination, breach of contract and unfair dismissal claims, and Elizabeth Stephenson. Former practice head Binder Bansel is now at Penningtons Manches LLP.

Boutique firm Rahman Lowe Solicitors has a strong track record representing clients before the Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal. β€˜Commercial, thorough and pragmatic’ Jahad Rahman, who jointly leads the practice with Sarah Lowe, successfully represented a former senior branch partner of real estate agency Spicerhaart in a constructive dismissal and whistleblowing claim. Rahman and Lowe successfully assisted four managers with an unlawful wage deduction claim brought against the Royal Mail before the Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal.

Employment boutique SW19Lawyers LLP β€˜provides high-quality, pragmatic and commercial advice’, with particular expertise in discrimination claims, including maternity matters. β€˜Highly experienced’ founder Belinda Eriksson, who β€˜gives clear, sensible advice promptly’, has significant experience advising on whistleblowing and disability cases. On the non-contentious side, consultant Mitchell Bell assists employees with settlement agreements and contract reviews. Associate Cathryn O’Hare is also recommended.

Simpson Millar LLP’s team has an extensive track record acting for trade unions such as the CWU, Aircrew Officers Association Europe (AOAE) and Unionline. Key partner Joy Drummond has been assisting the FDA on a number of claims brought by members employed by the Crown Prosecution Service regarding holiday pay under Working Time Regulations. Aneil Balgobin is another name to note. Linda Stewart has left private practice.

Thompsons Solicitors LLP’s department acts solely for trade unions, and regularly handles high-profile matters. Gerard Airey successfully represented two Unite the Union members employed by EasyJet in indirect sex discrimination claims brought before the Employment Tribunal; the claims concerned accommodation for breastfeeding mothers. Michael Michaeloudis successfully represented two Unite the Union members employed by Trek Highway Services in a claim brought before the Employment Appeal Tribunal; the claimants were left unemployed and without statutory or contractual entitlement to payment when the contract they were employed under changed hands, and the firm successfully established on appeal that there had been a transfer to Amey. Rakesh Patel heads the department.


Employment: employers and senior executives

Index of tables

  1. Employment: employers
  2. Employment: senior executives
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Employment: employers and senior executives clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

Allen & Overy LLP’s highly rated practice handles the full gamut of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, with particular strength in representing financial services sector clients in high-value tribunal litigation. Practice head Karen Seward has been acting for Nomura on high-value litigation brought by a former senior employee before the High Court alleging wrongful dismissal. Sarah Henchoz advised Asahi Breweries on the employment aspects concerning the company’s €2.6bn acquisition of the Peroni, Grolsch and Meantime brands from AB InBev. The well-regarded Mark Mansell has been acting for Pure Storage in a restrictive covenant matter brought by a former senior executive before the High Court and subsequently the Court of Appeal. Senior associate David Cummings is also recommended. Other clients include Google, Morgan Stanley and Barclays. Louise Skinner joined Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP.

Baker McKenzie’s β€˜excellent’ department advises on the full gamut of employment work for domestic and international clients, including global compliance, cross-border transactional support and union issues. Department head John Evason and of counsel Paul Harrison successfully represented Boots before the Court of Appeal in a claim concerning union recognition of the Pharmacists’ Defense Association. Daniel Ellis acted for Emerson on the employment aspects of the sale of its network power business across a number of jurisdictions, including providing immigration and pensions advice. Monica Kurnatowska, Christine O’Brien and Stephen Ratcliffe are also recommended. The team was considerably strengthened by the arrival of Carl Richards and his team from King & Wood Mallesons. Daniel Ellis is now an occupational psychologist.

In addition to transactional support, Clifford Chance LLP’s practice often advises on high-risk litigation. Practice head Chris Goodwill successfully defended Barclays in a number of unfair dismissal claims brought by former FX traders. Goodwill also advised on the employment aspects regarding the sale of ICAP’s Β£1.1bn voice-broking and information business to Tullett Prebon. Mike Crossan advised Permira on compliance issues regarding the extension of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime. Crossan also assisted EQT with multi-jurisdictional employment matters concerning the client’s acquisition of GB Railfreight, including TUPE transfers, union recognition arrangements and redundancy terms. The team’s other key figures include Alistair Woodland and senior associate Chinwe Odimba-Chapman. Imogen Clark has retired.

The β€˜first-class’ group at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP β€˜provides invaluable support on employment disputes and investigations’ and has β€˜enormous strength’ across all other aspects of employment law. Group head Andrew Taggart has been defending Watchstone in High Court proceedings brought by its founder and former chairman regarding payment under a settlement agreement arising from the claimant’s departure from the company. Peter Frost assisted Marathon Asset Management as the claimant with High Court proceedings brought against one of its founders alleging mass data theft following the defendant’s departure. Other recent highlights include acting for a number of banks on the employment aspects arising from the implementation of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime across various jurisdictions. The team includes the β€˜technically brilliant’ Tim Leaver, who is β€˜very robust in dealing with tough disputes’, and Christine Young, who provides β€˜sound advice’. Clients also recommend senior associate Jennifer Andrews, who is β€˜a real rising star’.

Lewis Silkin LLP fields an β€˜absolutely first-rate’ and β€˜market-leading’ team that excels in high-value High Court litigation and other contentious matters, including boardroom, data protection, gender pay gap reporting and immigration issues; clients consider it β€˜one of the few firms that really understands European labour law’. James Davies and Michael Burd jointly head the team; Davies acted alongside partner Colin Leckey, senior associate Rhian Hall and associate Carla Feakins for Deliveroo on various employment matters, including worker status issues. Leckey also acted alongside managing associate Rebecca Rule and associate Laurence Mills for Avery Healthcare in an equal pay class action brought by 73 care home workers before the High Court (notably, the first private sector High Court equal value claim). Other key figures include Toni Lorenzo, who is β€˜a real player in the market’; the β€˜very proactive’ Sean Dempsey, who β€˜offers balanced equitable advice presented with a commercial view’; and Nicholas Hadaway, who is β€˜a standout solicitor for senior executives’ and β€˜achieves fantastic outcomes’. Ellen Temperton and Richard Miskella are also names to note.Shalina Crossley was promoted to partner.

The β€˜highly recommended’ group at Simmons & Simmons provides β€˜pragmatic, commercial and common-sense advice’ and has β€˜great experience’ handling high-value litigation for both domestic and foreign clients. Julian Taylor, who now heads the international group following Simon Watson’s move to an of counsel position, advised Visa Europe on complex employment issues arising from the client’s reintegration with Visa in addition to day-to-day issues. β€˜Trusted adviser’ Mark Hewland, whose β€˜relationship skills are second to none’, defended Balyasny Asset Management in an unfair dismissal and discrimination claim brought by a former employee before the Employment Tribunal. The group’s client base includes BlueCrest, Societe Generale and Deutsche Bank.

Addleshaw Goddard’s β€˜great’ employment and incentives department specialises in Employment Tribunal and High Court litigation and regulatory investigations, as well as the employment aspects of high-value corporate transactions. β€˜Bright, responsive and attentive’ department head Michael Leftley advised FTSE 250 airline Flybe on the appointment of an interim CEO following the departure of chief executive Saad Hammad in October 2016 and the subsequent appointment of new CEO Christine Ourmieres-Widener in December 2016. Richard Yeomans has been leading advice to GVC Holdings on a broad range of contentious and non-contentious matters, including TUPE transfers, restructurings and board-level matters across various jurisdictions. Also recommended are Alasdair Simpson and associate Annabel Mackay, who is β€˜knowledgeable, commercial and a pleasure to work with’. Other clients include Morgan Stanley, William Hill and Serco Group.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP’s practice handles a broad range of employment matters for clients in the financial services sector, including high-profile matters with significant reputational risk. Key figures include the β€˜excellent’ Rebecca Harding-Hill, who β€˜excels in complex cases’, including discrimination and whistleblowing claims, and joint practice heads Lisa Mayhew, who handles regulatory matters, and Rob Eldridge, whose experience covers the enforcement of restrictive covenants in the High Court. Senior associate Bradley Houlston is also recommended. Clients include Tesco, Deutsche Bank and Thames Water.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP’s β€˜highly recommended’ practice regularly handles the employment aspects of M&A transactions, as well as Employment Tribunal litigation. Practice head Caroline Stroud and Nicholas Squire represented Air Products and Chemicals in Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeals Tribunal and subsequently the Court of Appeal regarding claims of age discrimination arising from share plan rules. Squire also led advice to AB InBev on the employment aspects following the client’s Β£78.4bn acquisition of SABMiller. Kathleen Healy assisted Deloitte with the cross-border employment aspects of the client’s merger of nine European member firms. The practice also acts for Blackstone on a broad range of employment and partnership issues, including redundancies, employment handbook and tax-related matters.

The β€˜very proactive’ and β€˜approachable’ department at Hogan Lovells International LLP β€˜communicates well with clients’ and β€˜gets to grips quickly and easily with commercial objectives’. Department head Stefan Martin has been advising Dell on the employment aspects of the $3.1bn sale of the company’s information services division (Dell Services) to NTT Data. On the contentious side, Martin acted for Goodwin on claims brought by King & Wood Mallesons alleging that Goodwin unlawfully poached lawyers and clients from the firm. Ed Bowyer has been advising SABMiller on the employment aspects of the client’s $104bn acquisition by AB InBev across a number of jurisdictions. The β€˜very friendly’ Elizabeth Slattery assisted Ball Packaging Europe (BPE) with employment issues arising from the company’s acquisition of Rexam, including TUPE transfers across European operations and negotiations with European Works Councils. Clients single out β€˜very responsive’ senior associate Matthew Towers, who β€˜identifies key issues and solutions quickly’. Other clients include 3i Group, Northern Trust and BNP Paribas.

Linklaters LLP’s team is rated by clients as an β€˜excellent firm for corporate clients, particularly in financial services’ and has a strong focus on regulatory investigations, compliance and tribunals. Practice head Nicola Rabson, who is β€˜one of the real heavyweights in the London market’, successfully represented Glencore in a bonus claim brought by a former executive before the Court of Appeal regarding the company’s merger with Xstrata. Other key figures include Jean Lovett, whose experience includes handling individual and collective severance arrangements and discrimination matters; Jillian Naylor, who represents clients before the High Court and Employment Tribunal, with particular expertise in high-value remuneration, whistleblowing and discrimination claims; and of counsels David Speakman and Simon Kerr-Davis.

Mayer Brown International LLP’s β€˜very responsive and client-focused’ group handles a wide range of matters, including the employment aspects of M&A transactions and tribunal claims brought by senior executives. Well-regarded group head Nicholas Robertson advised Wells Fargo on the employment aspects of the company’s acquisition of GE’s global vendor finance business, including TUPE transfers and new incentive arrangements across multiple jurisdictions. Robertson is ably assisted byChristopher Fisher, who has experience defending against discrimination and unfair dismissal claims in Employment Tribunals, as well as breach of contract claims before the High Court and Court of Appeal, and senior associate Miriam Bruce. Other clients include Marsh, Kleeneze and HSBC.

Mishcon de Reya LLP β€˜has an undoubtedly stellar employment practice’ with strong β€˜industry experts’ across a broad range of sectors. Practice head Daniel Naftalin has been representing Pimlico Plumbers in high-profile litigation regarding worker status; the claim was recently brought before the Court of Appeal. Naftalin was also instructed by King & Wood Mallesons on litigation arising from the resignation of a number of former partners from the Paris office in order to open Goodwin’s office in Paris. Other names to note are Mark Levine, who is β€˜very accessible and pragmatic’; Jennifer Millins, who β€˜manages clients extremely well’ and β€˜works very strategically’; Greg Campbell, who is noted for his β€˜fine intellect, with a very down to earth style that makes clients feel comfortable’; and Sharon Tan, who has β€˜exceptional response times’. Joanna Blackburn is also recommended. Sir Elton John and Rocket Music, Expedia and Warner Music Group are also recommended.

Considered β€˜a genuine business partner’ among clients, Bird & Bird LLP’s employment group β€˜provides a very high level of service’ for both domestic and foreign clients across the full range of employment work. Group head Ian Hunter has been assisting Truphone with various cross-border issues, including immigration and contract reviews, while the well-regarded James Froud has been advising Salesforce on a number of high-value Employment Tribunal claims, as well as an international compliance project across multiple jurisdictions. Froud also advised Ciber on proceedings regarding unlawful competition and theft of confidential information. Elizabeth Lang continues to act for Jet2.com on various disputes, as well as day-to-day, outsourcing and training matters. Legal director Penny Hunt is also recommended. Other clients include Deliveroo, Honeywell and Lenovo.

Following its merger with legacy firms Nabarro and Olswang, CMS’s β€˜technically sound, responsive and timely’ practice has strengthened significantly across the full gamut of employment work, with a notable increase in regulatory matters for clients in the financial services sector. Sarah Ozanne led advice to King & Wood Mallesons on the employment aspects arising from the firm’s insolvency. Practice head Melanie Lane, who formerly led the olswang team, has been advising Ministry of Sound on the employment aspects of the sale of its Ministry of Sound Recordings business to Sony Music UK. On the contentious side, Graham Paul has been assisting BMC with an Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) equal pay claim in the private sector. Richard Brown, who previously led the Nabarro team, successfully defended Laing O’Rourke against a claim brought by a former senior employee alleging an unlawful deduction from wages. Clients also recommend ex-Olswang partner Catherine Taylor, who often handles employee competition and contractual disputes brought before the High Court. Anthony Fincham is another name to note. Robert Davies is now at Walbrook Law LLP.

The β€˜excellent’ group at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is β€˜smart, up to date, pragmatic and supportive’, with expertise in a wide range of employment matters that include TUPE transfers, senior executive exits and severance negotiations. Group head Nick Hurley has been advising Sony on all employment matters, with recent highlights including grievances, TUPE issues arising from transactions and compliance with Gender Pay Gap Reporting regulations. Trevor Bettany defended Drake International and various subsidiaries against a claim alleging breach of duty under TUPE of transfer. Clients single out the β€˜astute’ and β€˜commercially minded’ Michael Powner; β€˜stateman’ David Green; legal director Susan Thomas, who is an β€˜experienced pair of hands’ that provides β€˜hands-on practical advice that works’; and β€˜upcoming talent’ associate Rachel Walsh, who β€˜is great at building strong relationships with clients’. Emma Bartlett, William Granger and consultant Alan Julyan are also recommended.

DAC Beachcroft LLP’s department often handles litigation for clients ranging from the financial services, commercial to health and public sectors. Georgina Rowley represented Dell in litigation brought by a former employee regarding the employee’s rights under a stock plan. Rowley also led advice to CORETX on the employment aspects regarding its acquisition of Selection Services, including due diligence and arrangements for exiting employees. The department includes Nicholas Chronias, who specialises in trade union relations and multi-party employment matters, and Udara Ranasinghe, who has experience acting for clients in both the public and private sectors. The group is headed by Khurram Shamsee, who assisted the Government Equalities Office with Gender Pay Gap Reporting regulations. Other clients include Deutsche Bank, Royal Mail Group and Freightliner Group.

Farrer & Co’s β€˜excellent’ team has β€˜a great depth of experience’ across a wide range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, with particular strength acting for high net-worth individuals. David Smellie, who leads the team, successfully acted for the British Airline Pilots Association in a Court of Appeal case concerning collective bargaining and holiday pay. David Hunt and the β€˜superb’ Eleanor Rowswell, who was promoted to partner in 2016, have been advising Ahlibank on day-to-day employment matters, as well as regulatory issues arising from the Senior Managers and Certification Regime. Katie Lancaster assisted Ian Mikardo High School with employment issues arising from a high-profile local community campaign regarding the employment of a member of staff with a serious criminal record. Kathleen Heycock, who was also promoted to partner in 2016, acts for Imperial College London on all employment matters, with recent highlights including a new pay structure and collective bargaining, as well as disciplinary and grievance issues. Clients also single out William Dawson, who is β€˜very experienced in senior executive matters’ and is β€˜commercial with a focus on getting a good deal for his clients’. Rachel Lewis, Jonathan Eley and senior associate Serena Nicholls are also recommended. Other clients include Ernst & Young, ANZ Bank and Cognita.

The β€˜excellent’ team at Squire Patton Boggs has a β€˜strong and deep bench’ that provides β€˜quality advice’ to domestic and international clients. Global practice co-head Caroline Noblet has been advising Low & Bonar on the union, TUPE and collective bargaining issues arising from the sale of its artificial grass yarns production business to Mattex. Janette Lucas and Natalie Bellwood acted for US-based manufacturing and chemicals distributor Ashlands on the employment aspects regarding the separation of the client’s Valvoline business stream from the company across 33 jurisdictions. Also recommended are Miriam Lampert, who has particular expertise assisting clients in the technology sector, litigation expert David Whincup, and consultant Fraser Younson. Other clients include Coats, Marriott Hotels and Tesco.

Taylor Wessing LLP’s department often handles high-value claims and the employment aspects of major corporate transactions for domestic and foreign clients, with a strong focus on the technology sector. Department head Paul Callaghan led advice to News Corporation on the employment aspects of is acquisition of Wireless Group, including negotiating packages for senior management of the target company and potential liability under a historic TUPE transfer. Andrew Granger acted for EasyJet on a class action brought against the company by the cabin crew regarding holiday pay. Sean Nesbitt has been assisting Afren with claims brought by a number of former senior managers arising from the company’s collapse, as well as continuing to advise the client on whistleblowing and unfair dismissal claims brought by other former employees. Clients also single out senior associate Anna McCaffrey, who has experience handling employee privacy and β€˜gig economy’ issues. Other clients include Fabrinet, Macmillan Publishers and LeanWorks.

Travers Smith LLP’s β€˜extremely professional and practical’ practice covers a wide range of contentious and non-contentious employment work, including transactional support, Employment Tribunal claims and trade union matters. β€˜Extremely approachable and responsive’ practice head Tim Gilbert led employment advice to Micro Focus on its $8.8bn merger with HP, including both UK and overseas aspects. Ed Mills successfully defended Lenovo against claims alleging breach of contract, unfair dismissal, discrimination and whistleblowing brought by a former senior employee before the Employment Tribunal; an appeal has been lodged by the claimant at the Employment Appeal Tribunal. Mills also advised Teva Pharmaceutical Industries on various employment matters arising from the client’s $33bn USD acquisition of Actavis Generics, including TUPE and redundancy issues. SiΓ’n Keall advised Innovation Group on a major outsourcing project. Senior associate Adam Wyman is also recommended.

Dechert LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team excels in advising senior executives on high-profile exits, as well as assisting employers with litigation and the employment aspects of corporate transactions. Recent highlights include acting for Wyndeham Group on employment issues arising from its acquisition of assets of Polestar’s Bicester operation to be rebranded as Wyndeham Bicester, which involved the transfer of more than 300 employees. The team is led by Charles Wynn-Evans, and includes Jason Butwick, who β€˜manages risk efficiently’, and senior associates Jennifer McGrandle and Emma Byford, both of whom have extensive experience in High Court litigation. AspenTech, Barbican Insurance Group and Cambridge Assessment are also recommended.

The group at Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP often handles regulatory and compliance matters for employers, as well as trade union and contractual reviews. Practice co-head Paul Fontes represented two senior executives on behalf of JLT in a claim brought by the individuals’ former employer Willis following their resignation from Willis and subsequent arrival at JLT. Industrial relations head Marc Meryon has been acting for Govia Thameslink Railway on various matters arising from an increase in β€˜driver only operation’ trains, including industrial action across the UK and High Court litigation. Meryon also defended Thomas Cook against trade union-backed holiday pay claims brought by 653 claimants. Clients also single out Fiona Bolton, who has particular expertise advising clients in the financial services sector on multi-jurisdictional matters, as well as high-profile High Court proceedings. Martin Warren jointly heads the group with Fontes and is also recommended.

The β€˜fantastic’ department at Fox Williams LLP is β€˜extremely experienced’ and β€˜efficient’ in handling contentious matters for both employers and senior executives. Department head Jane Mann, who is rated as β€˜one of the leading employment lawyers in London’, has been acting for a senior banker in an Employment Tribunal claim brought against her former employer alleging sex discrimination. Aron Pope defended Jose Mourinho and Chelsea FC against high-profile tribunal claims alleging constructive unfair dismissal and discrimination. Clients single out β€˜exceptional’ legal director David Murphy, who, along with dispute resolution partner Tom Custance, acted in High Court injunction proceedings brought by the client’s former employer Foxtons arising from the client’s move to Knight Frank. Also recommended are Helen Farr and β€˜strong advocate’ Joanna Chatterton, who is β€˜never fails to offer measured advice’. Joanne Owers is now at DAC Beachcroft LLP and Audrey Williams joined Simmons & Simmons.

The β€˜established’ practice at Macfarlanes LLP provides β€˜very good and proactive’ advice, with particular expertise in reputational risk matters for employers and exit negotiations for senior executives. Practice co-head Hayley Robinson has extensive experience advising corporates on the employment aspects of restructurings, redundancies and TUPE transfers, as well as contentious mandates ranging from discrimination to restrictive covenant litigation. Robinson jointly leads the practice with SeΓ‘n Lavin, who often handles the employment aspects of M&A, as well as boardroom-level disputes and Employment Tribunal claims. Litigation partner Dan Lavender is also recommended. The practice’s client base includes Visa, Omnicom Group and ICAP.

Osborne Clarke LLP’s group often handles high-profile mandates from clients in the financial services sector. Group head Victoria Parry has been advising Silicon Valley Bank on compliance issues arising from the Senior Managers and Certification Regime. Parry also acted for Standard Chartered Bank in a constructive unfair dismissal claim arising from a restructuring. David Cubitt, who heads the national employment practice, acted for Excel Group Services with an employment status claim brought by one of the client’s bike couriers as one of four consecutive claims brought by bike couriers against courier companies that include CitySprint, Addison Lee and eCourier. Cubitt has also been assisting Yahoo! with cross-border employment issues arising from the acquisition of the company by Verizon. Other recent highlights include advising on senior executive terminations, trade union and TUPE matters for Radwell and Unipart Manufacturing.

RPC’s employment, pensions and incentives team has extensive experience handling high-profile contentious mandates for a wide range of clients. Patrick Brodie, who heads the team, led the team representing the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in a dispute brought before the Supreme Court regarding whether an employment claim can be brought against a diplomat. Brodie also has extensive experience handling TUPE and Gender Pay Gap Reporting matters. The team includes legal director Kelly Thomson, who has particular expertise advising on outsourcing, large-scale redundancies and other employment matters with cross-border elements. Investec, Coca-Cola and Chubb Insurance are also clients.

Reed Smith LLP’s practice often handles employment matters with cross-border elements, including TUPE and redundancy issues arising from corporate transactions, as well as disputes. On the transactional front, practice head Thomas Ince advised BT on the employment aspects of an outsourcing deal with Royal Mail Group, while Graham Green has been leading advice to Nokia on employment issues arising from the company’s acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent. Green also acted for Heidrick & Struggles on the drafting and implementation of new employment contracts, as well as litigation across 28 jurisdictions. Robin Jeffcott continues to represent a number of clients in high-value disputes, including harassment, discrimination and whistleblowing claims. Other clients include Alibaba, Channel 4 and RBS.

Stephenson Harwood fields a β€˜very strong’ and β€˜very approachable’ group that is β€˜highly experienced’ in employment mandates. Its expertise ranges from disciplinary investigations and employment issues arising from corporate transactions, including TUPE transfers. Purvis Ghani, who has β€˜excellent technical skills’, assists Thomson Reuters with UK and international employment issues arising from employee exits, as well as tax and other compliance matters. Anne Pritam acted for Arriva on TUPE and industrial relations issues arising from the company’s successful bid to take over the London Overground concession. Kiersten Lucas is representing 23 claimants in proceedings brought against their former employer before the Commercial Court regarding contractual obligations in accordance with employee compensation schemes. The β€˜very experienced, diligent and reliable’ Kate Brearley is leading employment advice to an AIM-listed company on negotiations concerning the exit of the company’s founder and CEO. Clients also single out Paul Reeves, who is β€˜brilliantly engaging with clients and shrewd with opponents’. Other clients include HSB Engineering Insurance (HSB EIL), Mercer and CF Partners.

The β€˜excellent’ team at Ashurst has significant experience handling matters with cross-border elements and has seen an increase in investigations and whistleblowing claims. The β€˜highly experienced’ Crowley Woodford, who now leads the team following Caroline Carter’s retirement, advised Siccar Point Energy on the employment aspects of the company’s $1bn acquisition of North Sea assets from OMV. Woodford also acted for China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN) on secondment arrangements arising from its joint venture with EDF Energy in Hinkley Point C. Other recent highlights include acting for Gala Coral on the employment issues arising from its Β£2.3bn merger with Ladbrokes, including negotiations of terms with senior management. Mitsui & Co, Nomura and Macquarie are also clients.

Bates Wells Braithwaite’s β€˜strong’ team is rated for its β€˜clear advice, tailored to business demands’ and β€˜fantastic awareness of the demands facing public institutions’. It is headed by William Garnett, who acted for former principal of North East Surrey College of Technology (Nescot), Sunaina Mann, in a dispute regarding aggregate remuneration; following Mann’s transfer to the subsidiary Women’s College in Jeddah as principal and CEO, Garnett has been representing Mann in constructive dismissal claims before the Employment Tribunal. Paul Jennings (β€˜responsive, commercial and scintillatingly bright’) successfully represented Margaret Dewhurst in a test case regarding the employment rights of couriers brought against CitySprint before the Employment Tribunal. Clients akso single out the β€˜truly exceptional’ Lucy McLynn, who assisted City and Islington College and Westminster Kingsway College with TUPE issues arising from their high-profile merger; Paul Seath, who has β€˜strong industry knowledge, is able to identify key issues and provides sound advice’; and Martin Bunch, who has β€˜top-rate knowledge’.

CM Murray LLP’s β€˜first-rate’ practice provides β€˜prompt, to-the-point and professional’ advice for senior executives, often handling mandates with cross-border elements. The β€˜warm and approachable’ Anna Birtwistle and β€˜consistently strong’ David Fisher led advice to whistleblowing charity Public Concern at Work on its intervention in high-profile litigation before the Court of Appeal concerning whistleblowing legislation. Fisher also acted for a former employee of a Russian investment bank in an Employment Tribunal claim alleging sex discrimination and victimisation. Other key names include the β€˜client-friendly’ Clare Murray, who is β€˜a brilliant innovator’; the β€˜technically excellent’ Bettina Bender; and the β€˜responsive’ Esther Martin. The group was strengthened by the addition of Sarah Chilton from Fox & Partners. Other clients include XR Trading, Adam Hall Group and Phillip Jeffries.

Clyde & Co LLP’s group is highly rated for its β€˜highly knowledgeable, commercially driven and client-focused advice’ in tribunal claims and the employment aspects of corporate transactions. James Major acted for Arthur J. Gallagher & Co in injunction proceedings brought against the former CEO of Oval, which the client acquired in 2014, regarding allegations of unlawful competition and poaching. Nick Elwell-Sutton acted for JAS Worldwide in a High Court case brought against the client by Kintetsu World Express alleging unlawful diversion of business, breach of contract and misuse of confidential information. Heidi Watson advised Chubb on various employment matters arising from the merger of ACE and Chubb, including TUPE and redundancy issues. Robert Hill leads the group, which includes Charles Urquhart and the β€˜hardworking, accessible and highly responsive’ Chris Holme, who β€˜is able to adapt his style and approach to suit the circumstances of the situation’.

DLA Piper’s department handles the full gamut of employment work, with particular expertise in corporate transactions and regulatory matters. The department is headed by Adam Hartley, who represented Uber in high-profile litigation brought before the Employment Appeal Tribunal regarding the rights and employment status of the client’s drivers. Hartley also led advice to CooperVision on a pan-European contract review and implementation process following the company’s merger with Sauflon. Other highlights for the team included advising a global banking group on the Senior Managers and Certification Regime. Jonathan Exten-Wright is also recommended. The department’s client base includes HSBC, ITV and the London Stock Exchange.

The team at Dentons regularly acts for financial institutions across a broad range of contentious and non-contentious matters. Group head Michael Bronstein advised Sanofi on claims brought against the company regarding the recruitment of a senior individual from a competitor. Ryan Carthew led advice to Dutch insurer Aegon on the employment aspects of its acquisition of shares in Cofunds. Also recommended are Virginia Allen, who assists clients with day-to-day matters, grievances and exit negotiations with senior executives, and Gilla Harris. Other clients include John Lewis Partnership, Informa and Cathay Group.

Doyle Clayton is a strong boutique firm that excels in acting for employers in the financial services and insurance sectors. It also assists senior executives with high-profile litigation. Peter De Maria, who is noted for his β€˜calm approach’, acted for Bluefin Group in a springboard injunction matter following the departure of the client’s former CEO to competitor Global Risk Partners. David Evans is acting for Starwood Capital on all internal employment matters, including senior management exits and policy reviews. The team includes Jennifer Nicol, who specialises in restructurings, executive terminations and discrimination and whistleblowing claims. Co-founders Peter Doyle and Darren Clayton are also recommended.

The team at Latham & Watkins regularly assists clients with a wide range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including cross-border M&A, documentation reviews and Employment Tribunal claims. Catherine Drinnan advised Sienna Biopharmaceuticals on employment issues arising from its acquisition of Creabilis, which involved negotiating share purchase agreements. Drinnan also acted Allergan on the employment aspects related to the sale of its genetics pharmaceutical business to Teva Pharmaceuticals. The team is led by Stephen Brown, who is co-head of the firm’s wider global benefits, compensation and employment department. Other clients include Addison Lee, Aon and Thomas Cook.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP’s team regularly handles claims brought before the Employment Tribunal and High Court, as well as the employment aspects of cross-border M&A. Recent highlights include defending Argo Group against claims brought by a former senior employee before the Employment Tribunal and High Court alleging breach of contract, disability discrimination and whistleblowing. The team also represented Guvera in an Employment Tribunal claim brought by more than 80 former employees of UK subsidiary Blinkbox Music concerning employment liabilities arising from Blinkbox Music going into administration. Matthew Howse heads the practice, which includes Pulina Whitaker, who has experience advising on corporate transactions, as well as unfair dismissal, discrimination and breach of contract claims.

The β€˜excellent’ department at Norton Rose Fulbright provides β€˜a very responsive service, pragmatic advice and a high level of technical expertise’. The β€˜professional, personable and credible’ Catrina Smith, who is singled out for her β€˜client-focused and commercial approach’, advised Willis Lease on the employment aspects of its acquisition of the consulting and asset management business of TES Aviation Group. The department is headed by Paul Griffin, who often assists clients with cross-border employment issues and High Court claims. Clients single out senior associate Lauren Pullen-Stanley, who is β€˜smart, robust and user-friendly’. Other clients include BMW, BP and Pfizer.

Pinsent Masons LLP’ β€˜extremely strong team’ handles a range of big-ticket mandates, including compliance and high-profile restrictive covenant issues. β€˜Brilliant’ and β€˜practical’ group head Edward Goodwyn, who specialises in acting for clients in the infrastructure sector, successfully defended Bombardier against a compulsory trade union recognition application brought by Unite before the Central Arbitration Committee. Steven Cochrane advised Teva Pharmaceuticals on a number of employment matters arising from the sale of Actavis Generics to Accord Healthcare, including negotiating and preparing revised contracts for senior employees. Other clients include TClarke, Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (CB&I) and Tata Communications.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers Legal LLP’s team excels in handling employment litigation matters in addition to its tax expertise. It is led by Ed Stacey, who has been leading advice to Phones4U (in administration) on Employment Tribunal claims brought by more than 1,000 employees alleging failure to carry out collective redundancy consultation. Nick Willis has been advising a number of NHS trusts on tax-related and risk management issues concerning a structure to engage locum doctors and personal service companies. Also recommended are Chris Perkins and Tom Kerr Williams, who has particular expertise in collective bargaining and trade union issues.

Slaughter and May’s pensions and employment practice is regularly called on to handle the employment aspects of corporate transactions, as well as board-level disputes and senior executive exits. Charles Cameron advised Tata Steel on all employment issues arising from the client’s reorganisation and subsequent disposal of its β€˜longs’ steel business to Greybull Capital, including TUPE transfers of more than 5,000 employees. Cameron also advised Coca-Cola Enterprises on the employment aspects of its merger with Coca-Cola Iberian Partners and Coca-Cola ErfrischungsgetrΓ€nke (CCEAG) to create Coca-Cola European Partners. Sandeep Maudgil acted for GSK on employment matters arising from a series of agreements with Aspen, including the divestment of GSK’s anaesthesia portfolio to Aspen. Other key figures include Jonathan Fenn, who heads the practice, and senior associate Lizzie Twigger. Uber, Shawbrook Bank and Westpac are also clients.

β€˜Very responsive and commercially minded’, White & Case LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team primarily handles the employment aspects of private equity, M&A and real estate transactions for clients in the financial services and technology sectors. β€˜Very knowledgeable’ and β€˜extremely service-oriented’ team co-head Stephen Ravenscroft acted for Digital Realty on the UK aspects of the company’s acquisition of a number of data centres across the UK, Germany and the Netherlands, which involved the transfer of employees and compensation matters. Ravenscroft also assisted the joint administrators of CEONA with various employment issues arising from the company’s insolvency, including tax issues and seafarers’ employment agreements. Oliver Brettle, who jointly heads the practice alongside Ravenscroft, and compensation and benefits head Nicholas Greenacre are also recommended.

Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP’s practice handles a broad range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including corporate transactions, senior exits and litigation. It is headed by Henry Clinton-Davis, who has particular expertise acting for international and domestic clients in the life sciences and retail sectors. Clients include WorldStrides, Telus and Monsoon Accessorize.

β€˜Exceptional across all areas’, Bircham Dyson Bell’s group is highly rated for its β€˜prompt responses’ and β€˜clear understanding of client needs’. Group head Jesper Christensen represented Dr. Rosemary Gillespie in a tribunal claim brought against her former employer Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) alleging unfair dismissal and whistleblowing. Caroline Yarrow led advice to four asset managers on restrictive covenant issues arising from a team move to a new employer. On the employer side, Yarrow successfully defended Blue Cross against a constructive dismissal claim by a former employee. Nicholas Le Riche advised Famous Brands on the employment aspects of its Β£120m acquisition of Gourmet Burger Kitchen from Capricorn Venture Partners. Brian Gegg is also recommended. Other clients include Qatar Airways, Huawei and London General Transport Services.

β€˜Exceptional’ boutique firm Brahams Dutt Badrick French LLP is highly rated by senior executives and employers for its β€˜level of detail, empathy and superb professional clarity’. Gareth Brahams acted for an FX trader in a global investment bank in a suspension and disciplinary procedure arising from FX rigging investigations. Alistair French has been assisting a senior executive with a number of personal injury claims brought against the client’s employer, a construction company. French also advised a former CEO on a significant severance package. The team, which includes key partner Arpita Dutt, was strengthened by the arrival of Cerys Williams from King & Wood Mallesons. Polly Rodway was promoted to partner. Other clients include Blick Rothenberg, Brompton Bicycle and First Utility.

Covington & Burling LLP is also ranked.

DWF’s β€˜excellent’ team provides β€˜high engagement, prompt response times and strong leadership at partner level’. The team is led by the β€˜very client-focused’ Helga Breen, who has particular strength in regulatory matters, boardroom disputes, executive terminations and High Court litigation. Breen is ably assisted by Angela Simpson, who handles the employment aspects of M&A transactions, reorganisations and private equity investments. Clients include the British Medial Association, PepsiCo and ADG Market Making.

Fieldfisher has significant experience handling the employment aspects of major corporate transactions, as well as large cross-border projects and litigation. Practice head Richard Kenyon has been acting for the Architectural Association School of Architecture on various employment matters, including employment contracts and governance arrangements. Kenyon and director Neil Johnston also assisted the Nursing & Midwifery Council with a High Court claim brought by a former employee. Clients recommend Nicholas Thorpe, who has been advising Cushman & Wakefield on two offshore outsourcing projects, as well as various TUPE and collective redundancy issues. Margaret Davis, James Warren and David Carmichael are also recommended. Other clients include Air China, SAB Miller and the Cabinet Office.

Boutique firm GQ Employment Law LLP excels in representing clients in litigation before the Employment Tribunal and High Court. Co-founder Paul Quain has been acting for AirSys in High Court litigation regarding two senior executives who left the company. Darren Isaacs represented Fortress Investment Group in an Employment Tribunal disability discrimination claim brought by a former employee. Isaacs also advised Halyard Health on the employment aspects of its acquisition of CORPAK MedSystems. Jon Gilligan, Daniel Pollard and Richard Harvey are also recommended. Other clients include Mercer, ING and Commerzbank.

Harbottle & Lewis LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team acts for a broad range of domestic and international clients, with an emphasis on the financial services, technology and media sectors. Group head Howard Hymanson, who specialises in high-value litigation, successfully defended a law firm in a disability discrimination claim brought by a former employer before the Employment Tribunal. Clients single out Yvonne Gallagher, who advised Town Legal LLP on the employment aspects of its establishment. Clients also single out Marian Derham, who has particular expertise representing clients in the theatre industry, including the London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art (LAMDA). Starship Technologies, SpareRoom and ASL Aviation Group are also recommended.

Howard Kennedy LLP’s practice handles high-value disputes and advisory matters, often involving cross-border elements. Practice head Jane Amphlett successfully assisted long-term client Foxtons with an application brought before the High Court regarding the enforcement of the restrictive covenant of a former senior employee. Amphlett has also been advising US-based IT company ePlus on various compliance matters regarding the client’s UK employees, including assisting with training, contracts and employee handbooks. Sam Murray-Hinde joined from Hewitsons, while Carolyn Brown is now at RSM Legal LLP.

Irwin Mitchell’s β€˜very good’ department is highly regarded for its β€˜sound commercial advice’. It is headed by Sybille Steiner, who is German qualified and has experience representing both employers and senior executives in claims brought before the Employment Tribunal and the German courts. Melanie Stancliffe often acts for French clients, with strong expertise acting for clients in the financial services, technology and retail sectors. Associate Suzette Squires is also recommended.

Joelson’s practice handles a wide range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including restrictive covenants and Employment Tribunal claims. Practice head David Greenhalgh led advice to Itsu on the drafting of new employment documentation, as well as subsequent negotiations with a number of new senior hires. Jennifer Maxwell-Harris handles employment issues arising from M&A transactions, including TUPE, and is also recommended.

Kemp Little LLP has particular expertise acting for clients in the financial services and fintech sectors. David Williams, who heads the team, has been advising Japan Airlines on various matters, including collective claims for outstanding holiday pay, changes to remuneration structures for UK operations, drafting a new staff handbook, and potential litigation concerning senior employees. Kathryn Dooks has been providing strategic advice to Accenture, including TUPE transfer and discrimination issues. Clients also recommend Marian Bloodworth.

The employment department at Kennedys β€˜punches well above its weight’ in employment litigation. β€˜Prompt and efficient’ department co-head Fiona Morgan, who provides β€˜clear and concise advice’, has been leading advice to AIG on the implementation of a legal helpline for policyholders regarding employment matters. Morgan also defended Chubb against an unfair dismissal and disability discrimination claim brought by a former employee. The β€˜truly exceptional’ Matthew Leake, who leads the practice with Morgan, has been advising Virgin Trains on various employment and industrial relations matters. Allan Finlay has retired.

The β€˜knowledgeable’ group at Kingsley Napley LLP primarily represents senior executives in high-value litigation. Clients single out group head Richard Fox, who has significant experience representing senior individuals in the banking and financial services sectors, as well as media and sport. On the employer side, Fox acts for professional partnerships, as well as corporates and not-for-profit organisations. Also recommended are Adrian Crawford, who often handles claims brought before the Employment Tribunal, EAT and High Court; and Adam Lambert, who handles boardroom disputes, TUPE, large-scale redundancies and discrimination claims. The group was strengthened by the arrival of Juliet Carp from Dorsey & Whitney. Clients include iDirect, RSM UK and the Saica Group.

McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP’s β€˜knowledgeable and pragmatic’ practice has significant experience handling employment matters arising from restructurings and M&A transactions, as well as disputes. Practice head Katie Clark (who is praised for her β€˜direct, business-focused, sensible and realistic’ advice) advised Evonik Industries on the employment aspects of the company’s acquisition of Air Products & Chemicals’ performance-materials division. Paul McGrath assisted Valtris Specialty Chemicals with the employment and data privacy issues concerning its acquisition of Akcros Holdings. Other clients include Formula One Group, WSP Environmental and Cygnet Health Care.

Memery Crystal LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team handles all areas of employment law, with particular expertise in claims brought by senior executives. Group head Merrill April led advice to Gulfsands on breach of contract and statutory claims brought before both the High Court and Employment Tribunal by its former CEO. Other recent highlights include advising an international company on exit negotiations with senior management, as well as advising another client on employment issues arising from the sale of a number of businesses. Senior associate Sarah Martin is also recommended. Clients include Gottex Asset Management, Chariot Oil & Gas and NORD/LB.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Europe) LLP fields a β€˜very experienced’ and β€˜extremely knowledgeable’ group of β€˜impressive tacticians’ with notable experience handling high-profile and cross-border matters, including litigation. Practice head Nicola Whiteley acts for global financial institutions, as well as clients in the technology and retail sectors. Of counsel Mandy Perry is also recommended. Other clients include Facebook, BNP Paribas and Ted Baker.

Penningtons Manches LLP’s practice handles high-profile disputes and restrictive covenant issues for both employers and senior executives. Recent highlights include advising the London branch of an international luxury goods and fashion company on an investigation arising from false VAT reclaims made by an employee; Tom Walker led on the investigations while Sarah Johnson assisted the client with the disciplinary process. Walker and Johnson also advised a foreign hedge fund on the employment aspects concerning the closure and reorganisation of two of the client’s London-based subsidiaries. The team is led by Paul Mander, who represents senior executives in disputes brought against major financial institutions. Andrew Haywood has significant experience handling discrimination claims. Jon Heuvel is now at Shakespeare Martineau LLP.

Proskauer Rose LLP’s group primarily acts for clients in the investment funds and private equity space, with particular expertise in high-value disputes, strategic board-level advice and regulatory matters with international elements. Group head Daniel Ornstein, who also jointly leads the firm’s international labour and employment practice with Erika Collins, advises on the full gamut of employment matters, including senior executive remuneration issues and contentious terminations.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP’s practice primarily acts for clients in the charity sector, with a strong focus on TUPE matters and tribunal claims. Practice head Emma Burrows led advice to the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG) and a number of other charities on wage issues concerning staff β€˜sleep-in’ services in the care sector. Tania Tandon leads on international employment matters and has substantial experience handling boardroom disputes, terminations and management incentive issues. Richie Alder and Nicola Ihnatowicz are also recommended. The practice’s client base includes Clarion Housing Group, Dimensions and Catalyst Housing.

The β€˜superb’ team at Withers LLP regularly acts for FTSE 100 corporates and high net-worth individuals on high-profile disputes, including Employment Tribunal claims and litigation with a cross-border element. It is led by the β€˜calm, effective and clear’ Meriel Schindler, who has been advising the Institute of Contemporary Arts on various employment matters, including negotiations arising from a potential discrimination claim. Elaine Aarons is assisting Informa with a number of multi-jurisdictional matters, including the enforcement of post-termination restrictions. Other recent highlights include advising J. Stern & Co on drafting contracts and staff handbooks. Of counsel Claire Christy, who has significant experience representing senior executives in shareholder disputes and exits, is also recommended. Daniel Isaac is now at Wallace LLP.

BLM’s practice acts for employers in high-profile discrimination and unfair dismissal claims. The team is headed by Andrew McDonald, whose experience includes handling TUPE and trade union issues, and includes Vanessa Latham, who acts for local authorities, educational institutions, SMEs and insurers. Clients include Westminster City Council, Aviva and CNA Hardy.

Bevan Brittan LLP’s team primarily represents clients in the healthcare sector, including a number of NHS Trusts and private healthcare providers. Group head Jodie Sinclair and Alastair Currie acted for the North Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust on a number of high-profile trade union detriment and race discrimination claims. Sinclair has been assisting Symphony Healthcare Services with the employment aspects of its acquisition of a number of GP practices. Currie also successfully defended the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust against an unfair dismissal claim brought before the Employment Tribunal and EAT.

The β€˜thorough, professional, measured and reliable’ group at Bristows LLP is regularly called on to handle the employment aspects of corporate transactions. Of counsel Justin Costley advised on the global employment aspects of WPP’s acquisition of Essence Digital. Costley and β€˜well-informed’ of counsel Lidia Poczok have been assisting Capgemini with TUPE issues, as well as redundancy and restructuring matters. Costley and Poczok jointly head the team following Linda Farrell stepping down from partnership. The group’s client base includes Blue Diamond Group, Movember and Diageo.

Browne Jacobson LLP’s β€˜superb’ practice acts for a range of clients from the retail, financial services and education sectors. Practice head Raymond Silverstein has been advising a former managing director at JP Morgan on cross-border investigations regarding a multibillion-dollar trading loss for the bank. In another key matter, Silverstein is acting alongside associate Gemma Steele for an NHS Trust on issues concerning the potential redundancy of a senior executive arising from a high-profile restructure. Associate Heather Mitchell acts for a number of schools and educational institutions on TUPE and trade union disputes; her recent highlights include representing a federation of schools and its executive head in a discrimination claim brought by a former employee. Also recommended are Peter Jones, who heads the national practice from the Nottingham office, and associate Elish Kennedy.

Capsticks LLP’s team specialises in handling employment matters for public and private healthcare sector clients, as well as police organisations. Practice head Martin Hamilton successfully acted for the Croydon Health Services NHS trust on a high-profile unfair dismissal and whistleblowing claim brought by a consultant cardiologist before the Employment Tribunal and subsequently the EAT; Hamilton also handled the internal disciplinary process on behalf of the client. He also acted for Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust on the employment aspects arising from the implementation of a new model of care, including drafting contracts and employment documentation. Victoria Watson’s recent highlights include defending a number of NHS Foundation Trusts against unfair dismissal and discrimination claims before the Employment Tribunal. Gary Hay has been advising the Met Police, London Ambulance Service and London Fire Brigade on employment issues concerning collaboration efforts arising from the Policing and Crime Act 2017, including TUPE issues, contract drafting and training. Peter Edwards and Andrew Rowland are also recommended.

Devonshires Solicitors LLP’s group primarily acts for housing associations. Co-head Amanda Harvey advised London & Quadrant Housing Trust (L&Q) on the negotiation and drafting of all employment and pension plans related to its acquisition of shares in as joint venture from Bellway Homes. Harvey also assisted Sovereign Housing Association with the employment aspects of its merger with Spectrum Housing Association. Co-head Ronnie Tong represented Merlin Housing Society on proceedings brought by a former employee before the Employment Tribunal alleging unfair dismissal and race discrimination. Other clients include Look Ahead, Clarion and Viridian Housing.

Edwin Coe LLP’s practice handles a range of discrimination, equal pay and regulatory matters for employers and senior executives. The β€˜particularly impressive’ Alexandra Carn assisted Duet Asset Management with due diligence and TUPE matters arising from its acquisition of Leo Funds, including exit negotiations concerning key senior individuals and the preparation of new service agreements. Clients single out β€˜very knowledgeable expert’ Linky Trott, who β€˜cuts through complex issues’ and β€˜produces fantastic results’. The practice is led by Rachel Harrap, who often represents directors and senior executives before the Employment Tribunal and High Court.

β€˜Excellent in terms of being able to understand the problems at hand and provide pragmatic advice’, Fladgate LLP’s β€˜versatile’ department is regularly called on to handle the employment aspects of complex transactions with a multi-jurisdictional element. β€˜Very knowledgeable’ department head Nick Tsatsas has been acting for the Go-Ahead Group on various contentious and non-contentious matters, including senior executive exits, remuneration issues and employment issues regarding corporate transactions. Michael McCartney led advice to Ipsen Biopharmaceuticals on the relocation of 60 employees from Slough to Oxford. Clients also recommend Taj Rehal and β€˜extremely knowledgeable and commercial’ senior associate Mike Tremeer, who is β€˜an absolute pleasure to work with’.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s β€˜highly responsive, practical and knowledgeable’ group acts for clients on the employment aspects of cross-border transactions, as well as on claims brought by senior executives. Clients single out group head James Cox, who advised Terra Firma Capital Partners on all employment issues arising from the client’s sale of Odeon and UCI Cinemas to AMC Theatres. Cox also acted for Investcorp on employment issues arising from its acquisition of 3iDM from 3i Group. Other recent highlights include assisting AECOM and 20th Century Fox with the employment aspects of two separate international outsourcing transactions with Capgemini, including TUPE issues. Berkeley Group, StepStone and Walmart are also clients.

Goodman Derrick LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team is highly regarded for its β€˜carefully thought-out advice’ and β€˜quick responses’. Practice co-head Alexandra Bonner, who joined from Blake Morgan LLP, assisted ComplianceOnline with a review of the client’s contracts, staff handbooks and consultancy agreements, as well as a claim brought by a former employee regarding dismissal and contractual notice during the probationary period. Alison Downie, who jointly leads the team with Bonner, successfully defended Ebonycare against long-running Employment Tribunal claims brought by a former employee alleging disability discrimination. Clients also single out β€˜consistently excellent’ associate Katee Dias, who is a β€˜pleasure to work with’. Associates Clare Gilroy-Scott and Rose Branson are also recommended.

Gordon Dadds LLP’s group strengthened its international offering following its merger with immigration firm Platt & Associates in 2016, with particular strength in litigation and tribunal claims. Group head Laura Livingstone primarily handles non-contentious matters, including small and large-scale redundancies, TUPE issues and the employment aspects of commercial transactions. Other key figures include Martin Pratt, who advises employers and high-net-worth individuals, Rebecca Lynch, who often handles contracts, tribunal litigation and terminations for corporate clients, and consultant Marie van der Zyl.

Gowling WLG’s β€˜strong’ team assists employers with regulatory matters and in litigation brought by former employees. Mark Greenburgh has been advising the Police and Crime Commissioner for Greater Manchestser on severance agreements and pension rights issues before the Ombudsman and the High Court. The team is led by Jane Fielding, who is β€˜pragmatic, clear, balanced and quick to respond’, and includes Jonathan Chamberlain and Martin Chitty.

The β€˜exceptional’ practice at Greenberg Traurig, LLP is rated by clients as β€˜highly knowledgeable, patient and responsive’. β€˜Outstanding’ practice head Naomi Feinstein (who is considered β€˜a safe pair of hands’) led advice to Smiths Group on employment issues arising from the divestment of its Wallace product line to CooperSurgical. Feinstein also acted for Maxxia on employment matters arising from various acquisitions by the client, including negotiations of employment contracts. Russell Lamb advised Nomad Foods on the implementation and enforcement of a global senior executive equity compensation plan across a number of European jurisdictions. Associate Rob Collier-Wright is also recommended.

The β€˜absolutely excellent’ practice at Hill Dickinson LLP regularly acts for employers in tribunal claims and injunction proceedings. London practice head James Williams advised the College of North West London on a complex race discrimination and unfair dismissal claim. Williams also acted for a brokerage firm on negotiating an agreement regarding potential injunction proceedings brought against three senior executives who removed confidential information. Other recent highlights include assisting Azalea Maritime with the dismissal of a Croatian engineer on one of the client’s UK-flagged vessels. Clients also single out β€˜excellent’ associate Will Steed, who β€˜understands clients’ businesses’. Other clients include the City of Westminster College, Sabal Financial Group and Acer.

Jones Day’s β€˜very responsive’ department is noted for its β€˜strong business acumen and great ability to cut through to the important things’. β€˜Pragmatic’ of counsel Mark Taylor heads the practice and recently acted for Perella Weinberg Partners on the employment aspects of the sale of Pinewood Group, which involved change of control bonuses, senior management departures and renegotiations of terms for non-executive directors. Other clients include the Royal Academy of Arts, GE and STERIS.

Katten Muchin Rosenman UK LLP’s employment team often acts for clients in the education and not-for-profit, financial services and hospitality sectors. Team head Christopher Hitchins, who joined from Lewis Silkin LLP in 2015, has been leading advice to ARK Schools on various contentious and non-contentious matters, including union issues and Employment Tribunal claims. Hitchins also assisted South Korean department store franchise Shinsegae with multi-jurisdictional contract issues concerning the client’s acquisition of French fashion brand Paul Poiret. Other clients include Yoh, K2M and Chopard.

Magrath Sheldrick LLP’s β€˜very knowledgeable’ group is rated for its β€˜very good response times, excellent acumen and knowledge, and realistic advice’. It is led by the β€˜very commercial and straightforward’ Adele Martins, who β€˜focuses on what is important to her client and aims to achieve it without a drawn-out process’. β€˜Friendly and supportive’ associate Nichola Gallen-Friend is also recommended. Clients include Delfont Mackintosh Theatres, General Healthcare Group and Mediaocean. Susan Thompson is now at Simkins LLP.

McGuireWoods London LLP’s team regularly handles high-profile contentious matters for clients in the financial services sector. Daniel Peyton represents employers and senior executives before the Employment Tribunal and High Court; he leads the team, which includes senior associates Andrea Ward, who primarily acts for multinational clients in the US and Europe, and Sarah Thompson, who often advises on transactional matters.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP’s team is regularly tasked with assisting clients with the employment aspects of cross-border transactions. Of counsel Helena Derbyshire, who leads the team, advised Nikkei on employment law issues arising from its $1.3bn acquisition of Financial Times from Pearson, which involved handling pension arrangements and industrial action liabilities. Derbyshire also acted for Avara Pharmaceutical Services on employee transfers and benefit issues arising from its acquisition of Astra Zeneca’s Avlon business. Other highlights included advising Intel on the UK and US aspects of its joint venture with TPG, including employee consultation requirements and benefits. Nokia, Ball Corporation and Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance are also clients.

Steptoe and Johnson LLP’s practice handles a broad range of employment matters, including trade union matters, TUPE transfers and large-scale reorganisations. Practice head Nic Hart has notable experience representing clients before the Employment Tribunal and EAT. Jay Webster handles multi-jurisdictional redundancies and business protections issues, including post-termination restrictions and confidentiality obligations. Clients include Mott MacDonald, Servomex and Anadarko Algeria.

Praised for its β€˜very sensible but firm’ approach, Teacher Stern LLP’s β€˜very pleasant’ department defends domestic and international clients in high-profile litigation. β€˜Very commercial and approachable’ department head James Baker defended Euronext in a high-profile Employment Tribunal claim brought by a former employee alleging unfair dismissal, discrimination and harassment. Sarah Glockler advised Ed’s Easy Diner on TUPE and redundancy matters following the administration of the company and sale of certain assets to Giraffe Restaurants. Senior consultant David von Hagen, who joined from Winckworth Sherwood LLP, has been assisting WK Business Solutions with various contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including dismissals, and TUPE and insolvency issues. Clients also single out senior associate Danielle Ramdel, who leads on immigration matters.

Vedder Price’s group provides β€˜excellent service and advice’ across a broad range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, with particular expertise in cross-border issues. Thomas Wilde and Jonathan Maude lead the practice and regularly handle employment issues concerning brand protection, as well as cross-border investigations.

Watson Farley & Williams LLP’s β€˜very thorough’ team handles the full gamut of employment law matters, with particular focus on TUPE issues. Clients single out the β€˜exceptional, empathetic and commercially sound’ Asha Kumar, who acts for a wide range of clients in the maritime and energy sector. Angharad Harris leads the team.

Wedlake Bell LLP’s β€˜extremely knowledgeable’ and β€˜commercially savvy’ department excels in handling employment documentation, disciplinary matters and remuneration issues. Ravinder Mahal and Richard Isham led advice to CDK Global on a wage deduction issue regarding unauthorised expenses incurred by employees across a number of jurisdictions. Isham and David Israel advised Illumina on employment documentation for employees across various jurisdictions in the US and Europe. The department is led by Adam Grant, who advises on business reorganisations, outsourcing and transactional issues, as well as litigation before the Employment Tribunal and the High Court. Other clients include West Corporation, Brocade Communications Systems and the London School of Economics.

Winckworth Sherwood LLP’s practice provides a β€˜very high level of service’ across all areas of employment law. Practice head Jo Keddie regularly acts for employers on senior management issues, including whistleblowing claims and grievances; and also has notable experience assisting individuals with departures. Andrew Yule’s recent highlights include advising on the employment aspects of a high-value cross-border merger. Susan Kelly and James Lynas are also recommended. David von Hagen is now a consultant at Teacher Stern LLP.

Slater and Gordon’s team β€˜works like a well-oiled machine’. The practice handles a broad range of contentious matters for high-profile senior executives, including injunction proceedings, unfair dismissals and discrimination claims. The team is led by Julie Morris, who acts for high-net-worth senior executives on discrimination cases and whistleblowing claims, and includes Edward Cooper, who often handles internal disputes and collective bargaining issues; and associate Deborah Casale, who is representing a British individual employed in Saudi Arabia by a UK company in an unfair dismissal claim. Paul Daniels and Clive Howard are also recommended. Kiran Daurka is now at Leigh Day.

Stewarts Law LLP’s practice focuses on acting for high-value senior individuals in employment disputes. β€˜Extremely responsive and commercial’ practice head Tim Spillane handles litigation and arbitration for senior executives, including high-value bonus and breach of contract claims, whistleblowing, discrimination and FCA regulatory issues. He is ably assisted by Richard Nicolle, who advises on remuneration issues, and Ian Gatt, who joined from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.

Russell-Cooke LLP’s department provides β€˜prompt and carefully thought-through advice’ to senior executives across a wide range of sectors, including financial services. Department head Anthony Sakrouge is acting for an equity partner at a Magic Circle law firm on a potential sex and age discrimination claim arising from a reduction in her lockstep. The department includes the β€˜extremely patient and thorough’ Alex Bearman, who often advises senior executives on grievances, whistleblowing claims and bonus matters. Clients also recommend the β€˜excellent’ Edward Wanambwa, and Jane Klauber.

Kervin & Barnes Solicitors primarily handles matters for high-level senior executives employed by employers in the financial services sector, as well as other high net-worth individuals. The β€˜very savvy’ Gareth Kervin is β€˜a trusted adviser’; his recent mandates include representing a number of senior executives in complex discrimination claims before the Employment Tribunal, as well as redundancies and breach of contract claims. Clients also recommend associate and β€˜very good technical lawyer’ Lucy Truscott, who β€˜can be trusted to deliver keen advice’.

Payne Hicks Beach’s practice regularly handles dismissals, injunction proceedings and Employment Tribunal claims. The team was strengthened by the arrival of Kevin James from Royds Withy King; he represented a City trader in an unfair dismissal and whistleblower claim valued at Β£20m. Practice head Peter McRoberts primarily acts for senior executives in the financial services sector, with particular expertise in reputational and health-related issues. Associate Chris Weaver often assists senior executives with contract negotiations, disciplinary proceedings and grievances.

Royds Withy King’s department acts for senior executives in contentious matters ranging from disciplinary issues to discrimination claims. Department head Richard Woodman has significant experience handling unfair dismissal and bonus claims brought before the Employment Tribunal. Gemma Ospedale often assists clients with Employment Tribunal claims, as well as TUPE transfers and contracts. Also recommended are Caroline Doran and immigration specialist Helen Murphie.

Bindmans LLP’s practice is rated by clients for β€˜combining innovation with pragmatism and strong client-care skills’. Practice head Shah Qureshi acted for a City broker in disciplinary and criminal proceedings brought against him regarding allegations of LIBOR manipulation. Qureshi also successfully acted for six High Court judges in age, race and gender discrimination claims brought against the government regarding changes to the judicial pensions scheme. Other recent highlights include acting for the acting head of a major Dutch investment bank in whistleblowing and age discrimination claims. Other key figures include Emilie Cole, who is β€˜an excellent pair of hands on lengthy discrimination claims’ and β€˜never loses focus’; and associate Peter Daly, who is β€˜imaginative yet sensitive to the immediate needs of any client’ and has β€˜strong attention to detail’.

The β€˜extremely strong’ team at DWFM Beckman provides advice to senior executives across the full employment lifecycle, from recruitment to termination. β€˜Charming and diplomatic’ practice head Elizabeth Johnson often handles discrimination claims, as well as bonus issues and civil court proceedings. Clients also recommend Sharokh Koussari and Naylah Hamour, who has β€˜strong experience handling challenging situations’.

Hodge Jones & Allen LLP’s team represents senior executives across a broad range of industries in high-value tribunal claims, including discrimination and equal pay. Practice head Rhian Radia has significant experience handling sexual and racial harassment cases, as well as unfair dismissal and maternity employment issues. Clients also single out senior associate Homa Wilson, who advises on high-value discrimination and whistleblowing claims.

Leigh Day’s β€˜excellent, professional and knowledgeable’ group specialises in handling high-value disputes on behalf of senior executives. Practice head Chris Benson regularly represents clients before the High Court, with particular strength in disability discrimination, equal pay and pensions litigation. Kiran Daurka, Emma Satyamurti and the β€˜very responsive and knowledgeable’ Michael Newmanare also recommended, as is associate Paula Lee, who is an β€˜extremely capable and strong communicator’.

Russells Solicitors’s team continues to act for high-profile senior executives across the media, entertainment and sports sectors, with an emphasis on the music industry. Group head John Reid and Simon Esplen led advice to the former vice presidents of Live Nation on their appointment as joint CEOs of AEG Presents. Gavin Maude assisted Mike Smith, former president of music at Universal Music, with his high-profile move to Warner/Chappell Music as managing director. Chris Organ and Chris Gossage are key names.

Simkins LLP’s β€˜excellent’ group is rated for its β€˜timely and accurate advice’ and β€˜solid understanding’ of employment law matters, with particular strength in handling exit negotiations and discrimination claims for senior executives. β€˜Approachable, sensible, astute and knowledgeable’ group head Victoria Willson is noted for her β€˜good eye for strategy’ and β€˜ensures that clients’ expectations are properly managed’.

Praised by clients as being β€˜excellent in all areas’, Weightmans LLP’s practice primarily acts for senior executives, specialising in boardroom disputes and TUPE issues, among other matters; it also has notable expertise acting for major police forces, including the Metropolitan Police. Practice head Michael Ryley assisted the managing director and a number of senior executives of SABMiller with departure arrangements regarding the Β£79bn takeover of the company by AB InBev. Clients also recommend the β€˜excellent’ Mark Landon.


Health and safety

Index of tables

  1. Health and safety
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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Clyde & Co LLP’s β€˜excellent’ and β€˜strong, well-led customer-focused team’ is highly rated for its β€˜robust and pragmatic advice’. Practice head Chris Morrison, who is β€˜without doubt the best regulatory criminal lawyer in the UK at the moment’, successfully represented the ride operator in a Health & Safety Executive (HSE) investigation arising from the Alton Towers Smiler rollercoaster accident. Rod Hunt acted for an employee of Laing O’Rourke in a joint police and HSE investigation following a fatality that occurred during construction at Heathrow Airport in 2014. Hunt also represented MP Moran & Sons in an investigation conducted by the local authority arising from an accident at a showroom. The team also includes David Leckie, who specialises in handling regulatory matters in the energy and oil and gas sectors. Other clients include Airbus, Sports Direct and Asda.

DWF’s practice acts for insurers and large corporates, often handling prosecutions. Paul Matthews acted for Mercado in a corporate manslaughter investigation arising from the fatality of an employee. Hilary Ross and Dominic Watkins represented Queenswood School in a prosecution brought before the Crown Court following a serious accident. The practice is headed by Manchester-based Steffan Groch, who often acts for directors and managers in HSE prosecutions, with particular expertise in corporate manslaughter. Paul Matthews, who has experience advising clients on compliance and risk management, is another name to note.

Highly rated for its β€˜strategic, pragmatic and focused support’, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP’s group frequently defends clients in high-profile prosecutions and inquests. Well-regarded group head Kevin Elliott and Paul Verrico represented Tarmac Trading in a prosecution arising from a roadwork fatality. Tim Hill acted for McCain Foods in a HSE investigation and prosecution arising from an employee suffering serious arm injuries. David Young is acting for Goodyear Tyres following the death of an employee during a product demonstration in Spain. Katie Vickery is now at Osborne Clarke LLP.

β€˜A league above its rivals’, Kennedys’ team is β€˜excellent on all levels’ of health and safety law, with particular expertise handling high-profile disaster incidents. Daniel McShee, who is β€˜a client’s dream’ and β€˜one of the best known lawyers in this field’, is acting for the managing director of Wood Treatment in a complex investigation arising from an explosion that resulted in the fatality of four employees. David Wright is representing tank-cleaning contractor B & A Contracts in a corporate manslaughter investigation following an oil refinery explosion at South Wales that resulted in the fatality of three employees. Practice head Richard Crockford, who is β€˜enormously experienced in the field’, is acting for a number of demolition companies in Crown Court trials arising from demolition site fatalities.

β€˜Experienced and very easy to work with’, Osborne Clarke LLP’s β€˜excellent’ practice has notable experience advising on contentious and compliance matters with international elements. Practice head Mary Lawrence, who was promoted to partner in 2016, is β€˜a pleasure to work with from counsel’s perspective’. The team includes commercial and regulatory partner Catherine Wolfenden and senior associate Jo Forbes, who β€˜provides a high quality service’ to clients in the healthcare and retail sectors. The group was strengthened by the arrival of Katie Vickery, who is β€˜clearly an expert within her field’, from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in 2016. Other clients include RWE, Vodafone and Marks & Spencer.

Pinsent Masons LLP’s β€˜very responsive and knowledgeable’ group handles a wide range of health and safety matters for international clients. β€˜A leader in this field’, department head Kevin Bridges has experience advising on joint police and HSE investigations. The team includes Sean Elson and senior associate Kizzy Augustin, who specialises in fire safety and lift safety issues, covering corporate manslaughter and regulatory investigations. Laura Cameron, who heads the group in Scotland, is also recommended.

The β€˜responsive, commercial and reliable’ team at BCL Solicitors LLP is β€˜a strong practice for corporates and directors facing personal investigations or prosecution for health and safety offences’. Department head Guy Bastable, who has β€˜good technical knowledge, great tactical awareness and excellent judgement’, specialises in handling corporate manslaughter matters. The team includes senior associate Richard Reichman, who has extensive experience representing companies and individuals in criminal and regulatory investigations, as well as environmental, fire safety and food safety prosecutions.

BLM is β€˜a steady insurance panel operator in this field’ and its group has notable experience defending high-profile prosecutions. Key names include practice head Jennette Newman, Victoria Kennedy, who has particular expertise acting for clients in the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors, and Leanne Conisbee. The team’s client base includes Aviva, Allianz and Fusion.

Bond Dickinson LLP’s team handles the full range of health and safety matters for domestic and international clients, including strategic board-level advice, investigations and prosecutions. Practice head Jon Cooper is handling multiple investigations and prosecutions arising from explosions at the Pembroke Refinery in 2011 for the HSE. Cooper also assisted Babcock Integrated Technology with an internal investigation and inquest concerning a fatality at the client’s premises in Bristol. Other clients include Network Rail, the Post Office and Nissan.

The β€˜highly rated’ and β€˜very responsive’ practice at Burges Salmon LLP acts for clients in the transport and construction sectors, notably handling HSE investigations and prosecutions. β€˜Extremely experienced’ and β€˜very balanced’ practice head Ann Metherall’s highlights included defending a train operating company in an Office of Rail and Road (ORR) prosecution arising from a fatal accident. Metherall also successfully defended a construction company in a HSE prosecution regarding the client’s duty as principal contractor in a major project. Chris Jackson is advising a train operating company on an ORR investigation following a train-on-train collision resulting in 18 passenger injuries. β€˜Very thorough’ senior associate Matt Kyle, who has β€˜great attention to detail’ and β€˜a very calm approach’, is also noted.

CMS’ practice has significant experience in a wide range of environment, and health and safety matters, and was further bolstered by the firm’s merger with legacy firm Nabarro LLP. Practice head Jan Burgess represents multinational companies in criminal prosecutions, personal injury claims and inquests, among other matters. The team includes Olivia Jamison, who specialises in environmental liability, compliance and risk management matters. Lukas Rootman, who previously headed Nabarro LLP’s practice, has particular expertise acting for companies in the chemicals, construction, energy, waste and manufacturing sectors. Insurance and dispute resolution expert Carl Dray is also recommended.

DAC Beachcroft LLP’s β€˜seamless’ and β€˜accessible’ team stands out for its β€˜very high quality of service’, and has notable experience in β€˜what are often very difficult cases’. London practice head Fiona Gill, who β€˜provides very good partner support’, has considerable experience representing clients in investigations brought by the HSE, police and other regulators, as well as acting in inquests. Gill’s recent work includes advising a healthcare provider on a number of deaths in hospital care. Colin Moore, who was recently promoted to the partnership, has extensive experience advising on criminal investigations, as well as handling regulatory matters regarding fire safety, food safety and environmental law. Clients include insurers Aviva, Zurich and Allianz.

DLA Piper’s practice advises on regulatory matters for domestic and international clients from a broad range of sectors, including retail and construction. Practice head Teresa Hitchcock represented Ardagh Group in a HSE investigation following a serious accident concerning one of the client’s employees at a third party’s site. Litigation expert John Gollaglee acted for Wilko in an investigation conducted by the local authority following a serious accident at a store near Leicester. Mark Franklin is acting for Airbus Helicopters in a fatal accident inquiry arising from a helicopter crash. Roy Tozer and Charles Arrand are now at Shoosmiths LLP.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s practice is known for its β€˜very sophisticated and tough approach in terms of litigation’, and has considerable experience defending domestic and international companies in high-profile investigations and prosecutions. The practice is led by Howard Watson, who has β€˜a first-class legal brain’ and β€˜leaves no stone unturned’. Watson is advising BP on all aspects of the inquests arising from the deaths of 40 people at a gas plant in Algeria following a terrorist attack in 2013, and is leading advice to Chevron on an explosion at one of the company’s refineries. Rod Fletcher, who has experience defending manslaughter prosecutions, is also noted. Other clients include Caterpillar and British American Tobacco.

Plexus Law’s β€˜highly experienced and efficient’ practice has significant experience acting for clients from β€˜a vast spectrum of industries’, as well as β€˜organisations and individuals’. Anthony Bushell acted for Down Hall Hotel in an inquest and subsequent Environmental Health Officer prosecution arising from the drowning of two guests in a hotel swimming pool. Philip Tracey, who jointly heads the practice with Bushell, has core strengths defending individuals and companies in corporate manslaughter prosecutions, and handling related insurance coverage matters. The β€˜extremely diligent’ Anthony Baker, who β€˜provides the sort of reassurance that clients appreciate’, is another key name. The team was bolstered by the arrival of Richard Salvini and Chris Foulkes from insurance company Triton Global. Peter James is now at Harrison Clark Rickerbys.

At RPC, the health and safety team acts for corporate clients and insurers. Nick McMahon represented South Lakes Safari Zoo and its director in a prosecution by the Barrow Borough Council regarding the death of an employee. Gavin Reese, who jointly heads the team with McMahon, assisted a client with an inquest and HSE investigation arising from a fatality during a lift installation. Other clients include XL Catlin.

Squire Patton Boggs’ environmental, safety and health group is experienced in handling a broad range of work, including regulatory, transactional support and compliance matters, as well as defending clients in criminal prosecutions. Group head Rob Elvin, who also leads the wider European practice, defended Ei Group in a case brought by the local authority regarding an employee who was injured at one of the client’s pubs. Elvin also acted for Saica in a HSE asbestos investigation following the client’s acquisition of a manufacturing plant. Other key names include David Gordon and Gary Lewis. Senior associate Robert Biddlecombe and associate Laura Clare are also recommended.

Gowling WLG’s β€˜excellent’ and β€˜responsive’ team is highly rated for its β€˜tailored advice’. Practice head Andrew Litchfield, who β€˜has a wealth of experience’ and β€˜can be relied on in a crisis’, represented food manufacturer Bakkavor in a HSE prosecution arising from an employee suffering an arm injury at the client’s bakery site. β€˜Calm and measured’ senior associate Natalie Barton-Howes is also recommended. Susan Dearden is now at Finch Consulting. Other clients include Starbucks, Tuffnells and Cemex UK.

Kingsley Napley LLP’s health and safety team is part of the firm’s wider criminal practice, and defends individuals in criminal investigations and prosecutions. Key partner Jonathan Grimes has β€˜a sound knowledge’ of health and safety matters, including corporate manslaughter.

Norton Rose Fulbright’s environment, safety and planning team advises on a broad range of matters, including fatal accidents, asbestos exposure and product liability. Department head Caroline May has particular expertise acting for clients in the transport and construction sectors, largely handling corporate manslaughter and other liability issues. The team includes of counsel Lucy Jones and associate Emilia Richards, who have experience advising on contentious and non-contentious health and safety matters. The group’s client base includes DP World, Crest Nicholson and Energizer.

Weightmans LLP’s regulatory team represents a wide range of corporates and individuals. Crispin Kenyon, who leads the London team, defended a British Eventing member, as the event organiser, in criminal proceedings pertaining to an accident that occurred during the Chatsworth International Horse Trials in 2013. Leeds-based David Lewis heads the regional practice.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP’s practice handles a broad range of health and safety matters, including asbestos, fire safety and serious accidents. Associate director Jeremy Bark advised Angel Trains on various regulatory issues. The practice is led by Craig Baylis, who is experienced in representing clients in high-profile cases, including those pertaining to fatal accidents.

Bevan Brittan LLP’s group excels in acting for clients in the public sector. Group head Adam Kendall represented Reading Borough Council in a HSE investigation and prosecution regarding a patient death at one of the client’s care homes. The group includes Stuart Marchant, who advises healthcare clients on regulatory matters concerning the HSE and Care Quality Commission.

The team at Blackfords LLP represents companies and individuals in high-profile matters, including HSE investigations, prosecutions and inquests. β€˜Very knowledgeable’ practice head Gary Rubin is acting for the tram driver in a high-profile investigation arising from a tram accident at Croydon in 2016. Rubin and Gary Bloxsome are defending Martinisation and its director Martin Gutaj against a corporate manslaughter prosecution following the fatality of two individuals during renovation work at a property in London. Other key names include Trevor Francis and Cardiff-based consultant Philip Williams.

Dentons’ team has notable experience handling contentious and non-contentious matters, including compliance issues and prosecution. Sam Boileau acted for Humbly Grove Energy in a number of health and safety issues, including a HSE prosecution and regulatory investigation. Boileau is also assisting Virgin Media with the health and safety aspects of Project Lightning, which includes advising on regulatory investigations and enforcement issues. Stephen Shergold jointly heads the team with Boileau. Helen Bowdren is another name to note.

At Fieldfisher, the β€˜exceptional’ health and safety team often goes β€˜above and beyond expectations’, and specialises in acting for clients in the travel sector. Sarah Ellson is representing Alec Sharples Farm Supplies and Transport and owner Alec Sharples in a criminal prosecution brought by the HSE arising from the death of a subcontractor at the client’s haulage yard. Rhys Griffiths heads the practice and Andrew Sanderson provides β€˜creative, tailored and common sense advice’. Other clients include Media Force and All Transport & Logistics.

Fisher Scoggins Waters LLP’s practice specialises in representing clients in HSE investigations and prosecutions before the Crown Court. Key partner Mark Scoggins represented Balfour Beatty in HSE prosecutions arising from two employee fatalities. Co-founder Charlotte Waters has extensive experience advising on high-profile corporate manslaughter charges and investigations. The practice was strengthened by the arrival of the well-regarded Michael Appleby from Bivonas Law LLP. Consultant Louise Smail is also noted.

Hogan Lovells International LLP’s team has experience handling compliance and other regulatory matters. Environment head Louise Moore advises on liability issues across the oil and gas, infrastructure and energy sectors, and consultant Gary Cassidy handles investigations, inquests and prosecutions.

K&L Gates LLP has a strong multidisciplinary practice, with particular expertise advising large construction companies on domestic and cross-border matters. Neil Baylis, supported by associates Dylan Moses and Patrick Navein, is advising start-up company Driver Risk Dynamics on compliance matters. Practice head Christine Braamskamp acts for clients in inquests, as well as handling investigations arising from serious and fatal industrial accidents. Robert Hadley has experience handling crisis management issues and prosecutions.

Tuckers Solicitors’ team specialises in prosecutions, frequently acting for the HSE. Recent work includes acting for the HSE in inquests and prosecutions arising from various serious and fatal accidents. Practice head Jim Meyer and associate Julia Thomas are the key names.

β€˜Excellent’ boutique firm Turnstone Law handles a wide range of health and safety matters with a criminal element, including serious accidents and compliance matters. β€˜Engaging’ group head Simon Joyston-Bechal, who β€˜performs very well’, has extensive experience handling investigations and corporate manslaughter prosecutions. The group is also able to draw upon a team of barristers that includes Kevin McLoughlin and Valerie Charbit.


Immigration

Index of tables

  1. Immigration: business
  2. Immigration: human rights, appeals and overstay
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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Bates Wells Braithwaite is β€˜one of the top firms in the country for immigration’ and has β€˜an excellent team that offers a very high level of service, and attracts high-quality work in all types of cases’. With expertise across business and personal immigration, it advises clients across the media, education and charity sectors, acting for clients such as Endemol UK, The Royal Drawing School, Tyrus Capital Services, Rock Corps, Intersystems and Hillsong Church London, as well as advising a range of individual clients from domestic workers to chief executives of well-known companies and high-profile personalities in the entertainment business. Team head Philip Trott is β€˜an exceptional lawyer’ with β€˜immense knowledge and experience'. Senior associate Chetal Patel specialises in business immigration, and has a focus on advising clients on Tier 2 applications. Recently promoted partner Tim Barnden β€˜combines excellent client skills with years of specialist experience and enviable knowledge of the law’, and is noted for his personal and human rights immigration practice. Christopher Randall has recently left the firm.

Kingsley Napley LLP’s β€˜skilled and efficient’ team is β€˜personable’ and β€˜effective’, and β€˜delivers a consistently excellent level of service to clients’. It advises corporate clients including blue-chip companies, particularly in the legal, professional and financial services, media and entertainment, technology and energy industries, and also handles complex immigration cases for private individuals. Team head Nicolas Rollason has β€˜vast experience’ and advises clients on all areas of UK immigration and nationality law, with particular expertise advising businesses, investors, entrepreneurs, high-profile individuals and other high-net-worth clients. Ilda de Sousa advises large corporate clients and handles complex matters for individuals. European immigration law expert Elspeth Guild is β€˜brilliant’. Andrew Tingley is β€˜outstanding’, and advises high-net-worth individuals on Tier 1 applications, appeals, family applications, surrogacy and other complex applications. Marcia Longdon is β€˜a star of business immigration with plenty of experience of advising corporate clients on thorny issues’, and also handles personal immigration cases. Senior associate Katie Newbury advises on all aspects of UK immigration with an emphasis on complex personal cases, and associate Conor Boyd specialises in personal and family matters. Legal counsel Gillian Brownlee is also recommended. Associates Kim Vowden, Rizwana Quazi and Stephen Hall are also key members of the team.

Laura Devine Solicitors’ β€˜expert’ team delivers advice β€˜with clarity, efficiency and total focus on the most relevant legal points’, and is consistently commended as β€˜one of the best’ for immigration law, handling both business and personal matters. With a transatlantic presence, the firm is β€˜particularly good where there is an interplay with US immigration law’. Managing partner Laura Devine is β€˜a clear leader in the field’, and advises on both UK and US immigration. Head of the UK practice Sophie Barrett-Brown is β€˜exceptional, and appears to know everything there is to know about the points-based system’; she advises SMEs and start-ups, education institutions, and sports and entertainment organisations, as well as entrepreneurs and senior executives. Head of human rights and appeals Malini Skandachanmugarasan is β€˜very impressive’, and handles a range of complex matters and Article 8 cases. Christi Hufford Jackson heads the US practice. Head of compliance Natasha Chell has β€˜fantastic knowledge’ and is an expert in corporate immigration, with particular expertise in sponsor licensing and Tier 2 matters.

Magrath Sheldrick LLP’s business immigration practice is β€˜outstanding’. It handles UK, US and global immigration issues, and is particularly noted for its extensive financial services sector experience, advising major banking clients. It also acts for high-net-worth individuals, including several high-profile names in the entertainment industry. Managing partner and immigration head Ben Sheldrick is β€˜a fantastic practitioner’, and advises a number of multinational companies and leading financial institutions. Alfreda Joubert handles applications under the PBS. Zulaykha Bhaijee specialises in business and personal immigration law, advising corporate and private clients. Founding partner Chris Magrath is an expert in the PBS, and acts for wealthy entrepreneur and investor clients.

PricewaterhouseCoopers Legal LLP’s β€˜very experienced’ team handles complex immigration compliance matters for both corporate and private clients, and is well versed in planning and compliance, work visas and permit applications, coordinated worldwide migration, entry for inward investors, business visitors, emergency business evacuations and business continuity. It acts for a range of major corporates, with significant expertise advising clients across the education, financial services, IT and technology sectors. Practice head Julia Onslow-Cole is β€˜a true expert in immigration’, and β€˜very highly regarded’. Solicitor Kelly Whiter is head of private client immigration, and Katrina Cooper is also recommended.

Carter Thomas Solicitors delivers β€˜fast responses’ and a β€˜personalised service’; its β€˜expertise is unquestionable’, and β€˜its advice is always well thought out’. It is β€˜a market leader in sponsor licensing in the education sector’, and recently assisted a UK university to retain its Tier 2 and Tier 4 sponsor licence. The firm also advises businesses holding Tier 2 sponsor licences, and has a growing practice acting for Tier 1 investors and entrepreneurs. The β€˜dynamic and thoughtful’ Nichola Carter is β€˜valued for her integrity and comprehensive grasp of the issues’, and is commended for her β€˜tailored advice’.

Gherson has β€˜incredible expertise’ across the full spectrum of immigration matters. The business immigration team advises on investor visas, Tier 2 general and inter-company transfers, and sponsor licences, and its clients include national and international corporates. The firm also advises individuals and executives on the full range of UK immigration applications. Its specialist human rights, appeals and overstays team deals with a range of complex and politically sensitive matters, including asylum and extradition, and the firm’s β€˜real reputation and expertise is in handling giant transnational cases of enormous factual and legal complexity’. Roger Gherson is β€˜a leader in the field of immigration law’, and β€˜his commitment to his clients is unparalleled’; he heads the business immigration practice alongside consultant Lisa Amos.

Mishcon de Reya LLP’s β€˜highly professional yet always friendly and approachable’ team is β€˜exceptional’; it has a β€˜strong’ reputation for its work for high-net-worth individuals, and acts for entrepreneur, investor and corporate clients in the financial, creative, media, technology, sports and fashion industries. It is particularly noted for its expertise in applications for naturalisation and complex Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) cases. Recently promoted partner Maria Patsalos specialises in PBS applications, rights under European law, and appeals and claims for political asylum. Associate Natalie Loader is β€˜superb’ and has vast experience in the preparation of Tier 2 and Tier 5 applications. Steven Bostock was also recently promoted to partner, and heads the firm’s dedicated Tier 2 group. Department head Kamal Rahman is β€˜personable, professional and knowledgeable’ and is experienced in Tier 1 applications, with β€˜vast’ experience acting for high-net-worth individuals.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP’s β€˜first-class’ department manages a range of UK, US, and global immigration programmes, generally arising from major corporate transactions and reorganisations. It is also well versed in crisis management, intervening in the downgrade of sponsorship licences, advising on applications for administrative review, and obtaining immigration permissions for individuals previously removed from the UK. The team has also developed its practice advising high-net-worth individuals, as well as prominent individuals in the media and entertainment industry. Practice head Tracy Evlogidis is β€˜very experienced’, and associate Jennifer Connolly is also recommended.

Penningtons Manches LLP’s team of β€˜absolute experts’ has β€˜a grasp of the law as well as practice, and this makes a tremendous difference when dealing with complicated and challenging issues’. It acts for clients in the education, technology and sports sectors, and advises individual high-net-worth clients on their immigration requirements. Team head Pat Saini delivers β€˜creative solutions’, takes a β€˜personal’ approach, and acts for high-net-worth individuals, multinational corporations, and SMEs and start-ups, and has particular expertise in the education and technology sectors. The β€˜very able’ Hazar El-Chamaa heads the immigration offering for the private wealth sector and mainly handles investor and entrepreneur applications, as well as complex individual applications. Non-practising associate director Penny Evans focuses on corporate and education sector clients, and leads the Cambridge-based team.

Squire Patton Boggs predominantly acts for leading global businesses on high-end, complex immigration law issues; its clients include major players across the sports, media, and food and beverage sectors. It advises on PBS applications, Sole Representative visas and a wide range of ancillary issues including illegal working and recruitment procedures, objections to and appeals against Home Office civil penalties, and immigration implications of TUPE. The team also has particular expertise in Tier 2 compliance matters. Department head Annabel Mace has significant experience in the transfer of staff to countries outside the UK and has experience in the PBS, particularly on Tier 2 sponsor licences and related compliance. Supinder Sian is regularly instructed by clients in the sports sector, including major football clubs, on applications for players and their family members.

Baker McKenzie delivers β€˜accurate and timely responses’ and is noted for its β€˜high level of client service’. Benefiting from the firm’s β€˜vast global reach’ and working closely with the employment team, it regularly advises multinational companies on their immigration and mobility needs, as well as assisting high-net-worth and high-profile individuals on their immigration requirements. Senior associate Tony Haque heads the team. Employment team head John Evason and employment partner Stephen Ratcliffe are also recommended, and senior associate Richard Mills is also a key contact.

With a β€˜well-rounded’ team, Bindmans LLP is β€˜an extremely strong market player in all aspects of immigration, asylum, human rights, nationality and deportation law’, and has β€˜strong’ business immigration expertise, advising individuals, companies, trade unions and small not-for-profit organisations. The team is particularly praised for its β€˜ability to take on high-profile and cutting-edge cases’, and it is well versed in representing victims of trafficking, and advising on immigration issues in adoption and surrogacy cases and appeals. Alison Stanley β€˜has wide and significant experience and expertise in all facets of immigration law, including business and employment applicants as well as family, refugee and human rights claimants’. Liz Barratt is β€˜brilliant with clients, and also has very good judgement about how to run cases’. At the associate level, Emma Cohen is β€˜particularly well known for her work on intersecting family and immigration cases’, and β€˜offers pragmatic and helpful advice’; Ashley Fleming has β€˜a great eye for detail and goes the extra mile for clients’; and Roberta Haslam is β€˜thoroughly well prepared and a skilled tactician’. Stanley and Barratt jointly lead the team.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is a β€˜first-rate’ firm for business immigration and is commended for its β€˜extensive, up-to-date and relevant industry knowledge’. It regularly handles sponsorship issues, advises Tier 1 investors on complex investment structures, and works closely with the firm’s employment and corporate teams to advise on the impact of M&A transactions on sponsor licences. Team head Rose Carey β€˜exudes professionalism’, is β€˜a known expert in sponsorship matters’ and advises a range of multinational enterprises, as well as acting for Chinese and Russian high-net-worth individuals. Senior associate Paul McCarthy and associate Katherine Dennis are also recommended, alongside tax associate Elena Vasilyeva.

Lewis Silkin LLP has β€˜a very unstuffy, strong immigration team which excels in personal and corporate cases’ and advises clients across the legal, sports, fashion, media and entertainment, automotive and manufacturing industries. Marks & Spencer, Ford, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, ASOS and Fulham FC are clients. Team head Andrew Osborne advises large multinationals, smaller companies and individuals on PBS applications for investors and entrepreneurs under Tier 1, and on intra-company transfers and new hires under Tier 2. At senior associate level, Ben Maitland is β€˜extremely knowledgeable and personable, and clients really warm to his style of advice’; Diana Okoeva heads the US immigration practice; Poppy Wiseman has particular expertise in Tier 2 and sponsor licence applications; and Naomi Hanrahan-Soar has a focus on the science, technology and engineering sectors.

Russell-Cooke LLP is β€˜a standout firm in business immigration’; it provides a β€˜brilliant service for high-net-worth immigration clients, and achieves impressive results’. For business immigration, the team advises a range of multinational organisations, UK and US-based law firms, and smaller UK-based businesses and education institutions. The team specialises in the immigration law implications of complex and high-value corporate transactions, and also handles contentious matters. On the personal immigration side, it has acted for senior-level directors and partners, and also assists individuals on children and family law issues, with a growing practice in adoption cases. The β€˜experienced’ Edward Wanambwa heads the team, and associate Nisha Patel is β€˜calm and professional’. Tom Bradford recently joined Freeths LLP.

Taylor Wessing LLP’s immigration team works closely with the firm’s wider private wealth, employment, corporate and tax teams. Its focus is on inbound immigration from the US and Asia, advising a range of UK and overseas clients in the technology sector. It has a growing investor practice for private wealth clients and advises on international investor visas, entrepreneur visas and other complex nationality applications. Sean Nesbitt heads the team. Also recommended are senior counsel Charlie Pring, who advises US companies with operations in the UK, particularly in the technology, digital media, financial services and energy sectors; and Vikki Wiberg, who advises large corporates and handles high-net-worth investor and entrepreneur applications, particularly from the Far East and Middle East.

Bird & Bird LLP provides β€˜fast, effective and commercially focused advice’ and advises clients on business immigration as well as wider employment law issues such as global mobility and international HR strategies. It also drafts and negotiates immigration provisions relating to large commercial transactions. The team acts for a range of multinational companies in the energy, insurance, media, technology, telecoms and sports sectors, as well as high-profile individuals in the entertainment industry, and high-net-worth individuals. Senior associate Jonathan Goldsworthy, who heads the UK business immigration team, β€˜understands the commercial picture and is able to balance this with all the various pieces of legislation and provide practical solutions to issues’.

Boutique offering Bonheur Legal has significant experience in UK Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 5 immigration matters and advises corporate clients, particularly in the technology and software sectors, as well as multinationals, professional services firms and financial institutions, on the relocation of employees to the UK and overseas; Deutsche BΓΆrse Group, Tetra Pak, World Vision and Dimension Data Global Service are clients. The team also acts for high-net-worth individuals, and high-profile individuals in the sports and creative industries. Charlotte Hervet and Thierry Hervet are recommended.

The business immigration team at Clyde & Co LLP sits as part of a wider employment, pensions and immigration department and services a broad spectrum of blue-chip multinational entities on their immigration requirements, with an increasing presence in the insurance and energy (particularly oil and gas) sectors. Glencore, Total, Sasol and Universal Music are clients. Jonathan Chaimovic is β€˜highly recommended’ and is experienced in UK inward corporate immigration matters. Senior associate Tim Richards regularly handles Tier 2 applications.

Boutique immigration firm DavidsonMorris is noted for its β€˜refreshing common sense and pragmatic approach’; it β€˜takes the time to understand the needs of the client, and tailors the advice appropriately’. It acts for corporate clients across the financial, health and social care, sports, energy, technology and hospitality sectors on mobility programmes, and has a strong track record in challenging civil penalties. Casio Electronics, University of York, London Stock Exchange and Renault F1 are clients. The firm also advises high-net-worth individuals on their relocation and investment into the UK as entrepreneurs, and advises on Tier 1 investor visas and the transfer of corporate executives. Compliance specialist Jemima Johnstone leads on sponsor licence applications and renewals. Group head Anne Morris is β€˜experienced, knowledgeable and personable’.

Watson Farley & Williams LLP’s team is β€˜professional and approachable’, and β€˜its response times can be measured in hours and not days and weeks’. It advises high-net-worth individuals and special interest groups on a range of immigration issues, with a focus on complex Tier 1 entrepreneur, and Tier 1 investor applications. It also assists start-ups, particularly in the digital and technology industries, and handles Tier 2 skilled worker visa applications. Transferwise, Longleat Enterprises, Digital Shadows and KBC Advanced Technologies are clients. Team head Angharad Harris is β€˜fantastic’ and handles applications for investors and entrepreneurs establishing in the UK, as well as applications for sponsored migrants. At senior associate level, Anna Robinson advises on sponsorship and complex settlement and naturalisation applications; and the β€˜outstanding’ Devan Khagram specialises in PBS applications, including sponsorship licences, and complex investor and entrepreneur applications.

Wright Hassall LLP’s immigration team acts for clients across the retail, advertising, legal, food and confectionery, financial services and communications sectors. Team head Matthew Davies is experienced in sensitive cases at the crossover of immigration and employment law, particularly in relation to illegal working and dismissals. Associate Kelly Tomkinson handles business immigration, and also acts for individual clients. Former team head Marian Dixon has recently retired.

Bircham Dyson Bell acts for small and medium-sized businesses, international entities and charities on sponsor licences and visas for prospective and existing overseas personnel; Huddlestock, Adam Smith International and Duggan Morris Architects are clients. The team also works closely with the firm’s private wealth department, advising private clients on entry into the UK. Associate Tim Hayes handles business immigration, advising on global mobility issues such as applications for entry clearance or leave to remain under Tier 2 of the PBS, and also advises individuals on spouse applications, leave to remain, overstaying and appeals. Alastair Collett heads the personal immigration team and handles citizenship and residency matters. Jesper Christensen leads the immigration department.

The β€˜impressive’ team at Doyle Clayton, which specialises in employment and immigration, is β€˜commercial, astute and very easy to deal with’, β€˜responsive’ and β€˜willing to give detailed and realistic advice’. It acts for employers and high-profile individuals on sponsor and investor licence applications, with β€˜in-depth experience’ of the PBS and Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 5 applications. Anita de Atouguia heads the business immigration practice, and has β€˜staggeringly high knowledge and interest in this complex area’. Associate Mandeep Khroud specialises in entrepreneur work, and has a high-net-worth client base.

Duncan Lewis Solicitors’ β€˜diligent’ and β€˜professional’ team β€˜is prepared to go the extra mile’ for its clients. It is experienced across personal immigration, asylum, human rights and nationality matters, with particular expertise in judicial review cases. It acts for vulnerable clients such as victims of trafficking or torture, and handles unlawful detention cases. On the business side, it advises SME clients on sponsorship licence applications under the PBS, as well as on immigration strategy and compliance. It also advises high-net-worth individuals from Asia, the Middle East and Russia on Tier 1 and investor visas. Toufique Hossain has β€˜an amazing ability to conduct a wide range of demanding test case litigation’, handling complex public law cases involving judicial review and unlawful detention. The β€˜hardworking and dedicated’ Jenna McKinney handles asylum, immigration detention and judicial review matters; the β€˜brilliant’ James Packer specialises in judicial review; and Ayan Yalchin advises on Tier 1, 2, 4 and 5 applications. Vicash Ramkissoon is β€˜friendly and experienced’ and advises international businesses and high-net-worth individuals on complex Tier 1, 2 and 4 applications. Adam Tear recently joined Howe + Co Solicitors.

Fox Williams LLP specialises in business immigration, advising small and medium-sized companies, as well as individuals, on compliance and sponsorship, PBS applications, settlement and nationality matters. It achieves β€˜very good response times’, and is β€˜efficient and helpful with difficult situations’. Team head Sacha Schoenfeld is β€˜an excellent communicator’, and provides β€˜outstanding client care’.

Travers Smith LLP has particular experience advising clients in the financial services sector, acting for banks, insurers and investment clients, while the media, manufacturing, health, leisure and retail sectors are also areas of focus. It is experienced in sponsor licences and Tier 2 visas for senior executives and highly specialised professionals, as well as Tier 1 entrepreneur visa applications, and also advises on immigration issues arising from corporate transactions. SV Life Sciences, Triad Retail, Virgin Media and VR Capital are clients. Employment head Tim Gilbert handles Tier 1 (entrepreneur), Tier 2 (general) and Tier 2 (intra-company transfers) applications. SiΓ’n Keall advises a number of clients in the financial services sector, and Ed Mills is also recommended.

The immigration team at Edwin Coe LLP sits within the firm’s employment team and acts for both individuals and businesses in all areas of immigration and nationality law. Team head Dhruti Thakrar specialises in UK immigration work and has significant expertise in sponsor licensing work, Tier 1 entrepreneur and investor applications, complex nationality applications, appeals and second nationality options. Consultant Christine Chiew handles private and corporate immigration and nationality matters, such as Tier 1 and 2 applications, as well as related appeals and administrative reviews.

Ganguin Samartin delivers β€˜a very professional service’; there is a β€˜great deal of communication’ to facilitate β€˜a personal approach’. It provides UK and US immigration advice to business and private clients. Its corporate clients come from a range of industries including finance, media, technology and sports, and it also advises several high-profile entertainers, as well as investors and entrepreneurs. Appeals, human rights issues and overstay matters are also mainstays of the practice. UK immigration head Vanessa Ganguin is β€˜very approachable’, delivers β€˜speedy responses’ and is noted for her human rights and appeals work. US immigration head Paul Samartin is also recommended. Associate Meghan Vozila joined in 2017 from Healys LLP.

Described as β€˜a well-synchronised ship’, Gulbenkian Andonian has β€˜industrial know-how’ and gives β€˜detailed and honest advice’; β€˜its pursuit of a positive outcome and involvement through every stage are second to none’. It is also commended for β€˜its strong ability to handle its own advocacy’. It advises on a range of immigration matters for business and individual clients, relating to work permits, investors, innovators, business and residency applications, asylum and human rights, appeals, and nationality law. Senior consultant Bernard Andonian has β€˜vast knowledge’ and is β€˜incredibly diligent’; Dave Vasoodaven is β€˜a diamond’ and is β€˜very meticulous in his approach; he knows how to give the client peace of mind’; Hayk Sayadyan is β€˜very approachable’; and Fadi Farhat, who heads the appeals and public law litigation team, is β€˜very professional’, β€˜can think on his toes’ and β€˜has an excellent way of presenting cases’.

Macfarlanes LLP has β€˜a relatively small team, but it is undoubtedly a very high-quality practice’, and handles a full range of immigration and nationality matters. On the corporate side, its work covers corporate due diligence, advice to start-ups looking to employ non-EEA nationals, and immigration compliance, including sponsor licence duties and illegal working. It has recently assisted a number of companies in relation to issues arising from non-compliance with the requirements of Tier 2 and Tier 4 of the PBS. It also advises private clients on Tier 1 (investor) applications, applications under European Law and complex family applications involving overseas adoption. Senior counsel James Perrott is β€˜a tenacious lawyer with a wealth of high-quality experience, strong contacts and a personable manner’, and has a β€˜genuine passion for the subject area’. Edward Reed is also recommended.

Mills & Reeve LLP handles business and student immigration, as well as private client work. It is particularly noted for its work in the education and health sectors, and also advises organisations in the commercial and charity sectors; the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, King’s College London, Red Gate Software, the Royal Veterinary College, Baxter Healthcare and Olympus are clients. Principal associate Alex Russell heads the team and has a particular specialism in advising universities. Emma Tuck, who is also a principal associate, advises higher education institutions on Tier 4 student immigration matters.

LUPINS has an β€˜exceptional track record in human rights matters’, representing vulnerable clients; it has extensive experience in judicial review and higher court litigation, unlawful detention and refugee cases. The team is also becoming β€˜increasingly specialised in business immigration’, advising corporate clients, high-net-worth-individuals and educational establishments. Lawrence Lupin is β€˜clearly committed to his clients’ best interests’, and is β€˜extremely knowledgeable’. Tamana Aziz is β€˜a great communicator’ and is β€˜very committed’; and Stefan Vnuk, who leads the public law team, β€˜will not rest until he has exhausted every possible option available’, which β€˜ensures that clients are always represented to the very highest standards’.

Bishop & Sewell LLP focuses on asylum and human rights work, and also handles PBS applications for high-net-worth individuals, as well as public law challenges, and detention and deportation cases. Team head Mariam Khaliq acts for individual clients and local authorities on human rights applications, EEA applications, PBS and naturalisation matters, and deportation cases. Associate Karma Hickman advises on immigration, asylum and citizenship matters, and has a focus on international surrogacy cases and complex partnership applications.

Wesley Gryk Solicitors LLP has a team of β€˜excellent human rights and immigration lawyers’ with β€˜exceptional expertise’ advising individuals, and has a focus on cases involving human rights, civil liberties and European free movement issues; mainstays of the practice include specialist applications relating to international surrogacy and adoption, complex nationality applications, and applications for asylum and humanitarian protection, particularly on behalf of LGBTI clients. Firm founder Wesley Gryk is β€˜wonderful with clients’ and has β€˜considerable experience’. Barry O’Leary is the β€˜go-to person for LGBTQI immigration issues’, and he and Diana Baxter, who was recently promoted to partner, β€˜are among the most experienced and knowledgeable solicitors dealing with international surrogacy cases’. Alison Hunter is β€˜widely recognised for her work in family migration’.

Wilson Solicitors LLP has β€˜a first-rate reputation in immigration work’; the team is β€˜approachable, friendly, highly industrious and professional’ and β€˜a foundation pillar in the immigration law legal community’. It handles appeals work covering the full range of human rights and refugee matters, including appeals from asylum seekers, as well as human rights cases involving family reunification, marriage and private life. Anita Vasisht is β€˜a force of nature’; her β€˜abilities with clients are unparalleled’ and she is β€˜ready and able to take on the most difficult and complex cases and execute them with the very highest degree of skill, precision and professionalism’. Department head Matthew Davies’ β€˜legal analysis and tactical decision making are second to none’, and managing partner Michael Hanley is an β€˜outstanding solicitor’.

Healys LLP’s β€˜excellent’ offering acts for high-net-worth individuals, and regularly advises individuals from the sports, music, theatre, film and entertainment industries. It also advises UK Universities on student visas, extensions and reviews, and advises companies on sponsorship licences. Department head Ivon Sampson β€˜is willing to fight for clients’. Omar Shams, who heads the Middle East department, advises businesses and high-net-worth individuals on entry into the UK.

OTS Solicitors’ β€˜professional’ and β€˜extremely knowledgeable’ team gives β€˜realistic advice’ and is β€˜committed to excellence’. It has β€˜a wealth of experience’ in human rights matters and handles appeals and refusals; judicial reviews; indefinite leave to remain cases; EEA applications; and asylum claims. It also handles business immigration instructions. Oshin Shahiean β€˜exercises good judgement and has excellent communication and analytical skills’, and Teni Shahiean β€˜possesses excellent communication skills and knowledge in a vast range of immigration matters’. Solicitor Smit Kumar is β€˜excellent’, and consultant Paul Gulbenkian has β€˜vast experience’.


Pensions

Index of tables

  1. Pensions (non-contentious)
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers
  4. Pensions: dispute resolution
  5. Leading individuals
  6. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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The β€˜excellent’ department at Allen & Overy LLP is praised for its β€˜very commercial and pragmatic advice, built on an excellent understanding of complex arrangements’. Neil Bowden has been advising the trustees of the BT Pension Scheme regarding Guaranteed Minimum Pension benefits and the tax treatment of overpayments. DΓ€na Burstow advised Aegon on the pensions aspects of its Β£30bn acquisition of BlackRock’s defined-contribution pensions business. β€˜Standout’ department head Maria Stimpson advised the trustees of the HIBU Pension Plan on a restructuring and valuation relating to the sponsoring employer’s financing. Clients also recommend of counsel Jessica Kerslake and senior associate Jason Shaw, who are β€˜excellent in the field’. Jane Higgins was promoted to partner. The team was appointed to a number of panels in 2016, including Lloyds Banking Group, Shell and Imperial Brands.

Following the firm’s merger with legacy firms Nabarro LLP and Olswang LLP, CMS’ enlarged practice β€˜has a lot of strength in depth’ across non-contentious and contentious matters, for both corporates and trustees. Maria Rodia and consultant Nigel Moore led advice to MANWEB, now part of ScottishPower, on a Β£1.6bn longevity swap with Abbey Life. The well-regarded Emma Frost assisted the trustees of the Sony Music Pension Plan in relation to the transfer of the Β£38m defined-contribution elements of the scheme to the Fidelity Master Trust, as well as advising on indemnity-related issues. Former Nabarro partners Ian Greenstreet and Sam Robinson have been advising B&CE on various pensions matters. On the contentious side, former Nabarro practice head Jennifer Bell and Neal Gibson acted for the trustees of the IBM UK Pensions Trust in the Project Waltz litigation in the High Court. Mark Grant heads the practice, which includes Neil Smith, Mark Atkinson, Keith Webster and Simon Pilcher. Associate Alexandra Tomlinson is also recommended. Former practice head at Olswang Ron Burgess is now at Blake Morgan LLP.

Hogan Lovells International LLP’s β€˜first-class’ practice is noted for its β€˜excellent level of service’, as well as its β€˜thoroughness and competence in understanding clients’ needs’. β€˜Attentive and innovative thinker’ Katie Banks, who heads the non-contentious practice, led advice to Rolls-Royce on the Β£12bn merger of four schemes, as well as a demerger of all defined-contribution benefits and benefit changes involving approximately 86,000 scheme members. β€˜Widely regarded thought leader’ Claire Southern, along with Matthew Bullen, acted for Halcrow (now part of CH2M), on its groundbreaking Β£1bn pensions restructuring. Pensions litigation practice head Angela Dimsdale Gill has been representing ITV in controversial regulatory proceedings before the Upper Tribunal and subsequently the Court of Appeal regarding the Pensions Regulator’s powers to issue a Financial Support Direction. The β€˜outstanding’ Duncan Buchanan, Nicholas Heaton and Faye Jarvis, who β€˜fully understands the client’s needs and how to deliver them’, are also names to note. Senior associate Nathan Sherlock is also highly recommended in the litigation team.

Linklaters LLP’s group is noted for its β€˜excellent service, and technical and market knowledge’, and β€˜always sticks to agreed deadlines’. Non-contentious group head Ruth Goldman has been advising Hewlett-Packard on a wide range of defined benefits and defined-contribution issues arising from various corporate restructurings, including changes to funding agreements and master trust transfers. Rosalind Knowles and Philip Goss have been leading advice to the trustees of M&S Pension Scheme on the closure of the scheme, which is valued at Β£6bn. Contentious practice head Mark Blyth and Tim Cox have been representing the trustees of the Staveley Pension Scheme in regulatory proceedings brought by the Pensions Regulator regarding a Financial Support Direction. Associate Alasdair Smith is also a name to note. Other clients include British Airways, BP and Tesco.

β€˜Excellent’ pensions boutique Sacker & Partners LLP provides β€˜especially excellent advice to trustees’. David Saunders led advice to the trustees of the National Grid Pension Scheme in relation to the tripartite sectionalisation of the scheme in the context of the sale of a majority stake in the gas distribution business; Saunders was assisted by Eleanor Daplyn, finance partner Vicky Carr and β€˜first-class’ investment partner Paul Phillips. On the contentious side, the β€˜preternaturally calm and always balanced’ Peter Murphy acted for the trustees of the Coats Pension Plan in complex proceedings brought by the Pensions Regulator. The non-contentious practice is led by Ian Pittaway, while Katherine Dandy heads the contentious team. Mark Greenlees is also recommended.

Baker McKenzie handles a diverse range of high-value matters, with particular strength in pensions litigation in an insolvency context. The well-regarded Robert West and Chantal Thompson have been advising Emerson Electric on the pensions aspects of two major carve-outs and the sale of a number of businesses, as well as its $3.2bn acquisition of Pentair Valves and Controls. Arron Slocombe advised IT business Atos on a future benefits review for an industry-wide scheme, including a switch in basis in two pension schemes from the Retail Price Index to the Consumer Price Index. Jeanette Holland heads the practice.

β€˜A heavyweight team’, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP β€˜works quickly where needed’ and has β€˜excellent knowledge and understanding of complex issues’. London team head Jeremy Goodwin is β€˜one of the best pensions partners in the game’, and has been instructed by the trustees of the Deloitte Pension Scheme in relation to a transfer of defined-benefit pension schemes to a new master trust. Global practice head Francois Barker has β€˜a great blend of knowledge, gravitas, charisma and commercial acumen’, and has been advising the trustees of The People’s Pension (TPP) on various issues arising from bulk transfers into a fund from other pension arrangements. On the contentious side, Giles Orton represented Barnado’s in proceedings before the Court of Appeal concerning whether the trustees of its pension scheme could adopt another index to replace the RPI. Claire Carroll leads the contentious team. Clients include Lloyds Banking Group, the trustees of the GE Pension Plan, and the trustees of the Box Clever Pension Scheme.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s β€˜good, timely’ practice is well versed in transactional support and regulatory matters, including investigations and corporate litigation. It has particular expertise acting for clients in the bulk annuity market, counting Just and Scottish Widows among its clients. Alison Brown, who heads the global employment, pensions and incentives practice, has been advising Time Warner Cable on various issues, including changes to its defined-benefit plan following the sale of GE Asset Management. The β€˜proactive, highly organised and professional’ Samantha Brown, who leads on contentious matters with Paul Lewis, acted for the board of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) in relation to a Part 8 claim brought by the trustees of the Halcrow Pension Scheme regarding a proposal to transfer the assets and liabilities to a new scheme without members’ consent. The team includes senior associate Rachel Pinto. Daniel Schaffer is now with Slaughter and May.

Pinsent Masons LLP’s β€˜very experienced’ pensions team is β€˜at the top of its game’ and β€˜undoubtedly a contentious pensions specialist’. β€˜Well-respected’ practice head Carolyn Saunders has been leading advice to an outsourcing company on various complex arrangements concerning a scheme with assets valued at more than Β£1bn. The β€˜outstanding’ Isabel Nurse-Marsh heads the litigation team, which includes the β€˜singularly good’ Ben Fairhead. Fairhead and Tom Barton acted for Royal London in the landmark High Court case Hughes v The Royal London Mutual Insurance Society Limited, which concerned pension liberation scams. Clients also recommend the β€˜excellent’ Raj Sharma, the β€˜time-conscious’ Alastair Meeks, and β€˜excellent technical pensions lawyer’ Stephen Scholefield. At the senior associate level, β€˜tenacious litigator’ Hayley Goldstone is recommended along with Charlotte Scholes.

Slaughter and May handles a broad range of non-contentious matters, with particular expertise in high-profile scheme closures and benefit changes. Practice head Jonathan Fenn has been advising Marks & Spencer in relation to the closure of its defined-benefit scheme, which has assets valued at approximately Β£9bn. Philip Bennett was instructed by the trustees of the ConocoPhillips Pension Plan in relation to benefit changes. Sandeep Maudgil assisted Premier Foods in funding negotiations regarding three defined-benefit schemes. The practice, which includes the well-regarded Charles Cameron, was strengthened by the arrival of Daniel Schaffer from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, while Roland Doughty has retired.

β€˜Always great to work with’, the β€˜outstanding’ team at Travers Smith LLP has β€˜sufficient strength in depth to manage peaks and troughs in workload’. Non-contentious group head Daniel Gerring acted for the trustees of the AXA UK Group Pension Scheme on various matters regarding the company’s Β£650m disposal of its UK life and savings businesses. The β€˜always clear, pragmatic and timely’ Susie Daykin advised the trustees of the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) Pension Scheme in relation to the company’s proposal to close the scheme and provide replacement defined-contribution benefits. The highly rated Paul Stannard advised the trustees of the BAE Systems Pension Scheme, which has assets valued at approximately Β£13bn, on a major sectionalisation. The team includes David James, the β€˜outstanding’ Dan Naylor, Philip Stear and senior associate Karen Sahota.

Burges Salmon LLP’s highly rated group has β€˜excellent insight into Pensions Regulator investigations and formal proceedings’. Justin Briggs, who leads the contentious practice, represented affected members of the Safeway Pension Scheme in an equalisation case brought before the High Court and subsequently the Court of Appeal regarding the construction of the scheme power of amendment, and EU and domestic law issues. Briggs and β€˜up-and-coming’ senior associate Suzanne Padmore acted for the trustees of the Honda Pension Scheme on a proposed rectification claim. On the non-contentious side, group head Richard Knight advised the trustees of the Selex Pension Scheme on complex rule amendments. Also recommended are Michael Hayles, Tim Illston and regulatory specialist Clive Pugh. Clients include the Department for Transport, Western Power Distribution and the Department for Education.

Clifford Chance LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team has β€˜profound knowledge on the subject’, and β€˜can deliver advice rapidly and accurately’. Headed by Hywel Robinson, it has experience acting for both corporates and trustees on matters involving large schemes, including plan mergers and buy-ins. β€˜An exemplary source of advice and guidance’, β€˜impressive negotiator’ Clare Hoxey continues to advise Babcock International on multiple pensions arrangements, including issues concerning former public sector employees and funding. Hoxey has also been instructed by the trustees of the Alcatel-Lucent Pension Scheme on various matters, including a Β£300m buy-in with Aviva and scheme mergers. The team includes senior associate Rebecca Trapp. Other clients include Mitchells & Butlers, Barclays and EDF.

DLA Piper’s group has notable experience acting for corporates on the pensions aspects of major transactions, as well as assisting trustees in various matters, including the closure of schemes. Group head Matthew Swynnerton advised Mondelez on covenant and liability issues concerning its acquisition of Cadbury from Burton’s Foods, and advised the trustees of the Avesta Polarit Pension Scheme on its closure to defined-benefit future accrual. On the litigation side, David Young regularly handles contentious pensions and trust matters, including regulatory investigations and risk management issues. Clients include Allied Domecq Pensions, GE and Aviva. Michael Cowley has retired.

Fieldfisher’s β€˜excellent’ group is noted for its β€˜quick response times, wealth of industry knowledge and commercial mindset’, and regularly handles pensions matters for clients in the public sector. β€˜Very experienced’ group head David Gallagher is β€˜focused on practical solutions’, and has been advising the trustees of British Energy Generation Group Pension Scheme on matters including cross-border funding and guarantee proposals, and the restriction of future benefits. The β€˜very responsive’ Andrew Patten acted for South East Water on a number of issues regarding its two defined-benefit schemes, including the harmonisation of the terms of the two schemes and the introduction of a new corporate trustee. The β€˜excellent’ Michael Calvert acted for the representative beneficiary of the Gleeds Retirement Benefit Scheme in proceedings before the High Court and the Court of Appeal regarding a series of deed amendments. Other clients include the trustees of the Electricity Supply Pension Scheme and AT Kearney Pension Scheme.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP’s team regularly handles the pensions aspects of major corporate transactions. Practice head Charles Magoffin advised the trustees of the Morgan Stanley Pension Plan on a number of complex arrangements. Andrew Murphy led advice to the trustees of the Aggregate Industries Pension Plan on issues arising from a bulk annuity buy-in with Just. Dawn Heath, who has extensive experience in insolvency-related pensions matters, advised the trustees of the Coats Pension Plan on negotiations with Coats concerning regulatory action brought against the company by the Pensions Regulator. The team includes global employment head Caroline Stroud and employment partner Nicholas Squire.

Considered β€˜strong’ and β€˜very good’ by clients, Gowling WLG’s practice has particular strength in pensions disputes, covering professional negligence and breach of trust claims, rectification and regulatory investigations, among other areas. The β€˜very experienced’ and β€˜proactive’ Peter Shave, who heads the contentious practice, acted for the trustees of the Sea Containers 1983 Pension Scheme in a negligence claim brought against former professional advisers regarding members’ benefits and liabilities. Ian Gordon assisted a telecoms employer in relation to claims of breach of duty following the closure of a scheme. Non-contentious highlights included advising insurer Ellipse regarding the structuring of a new product, including compliance matters. Clients single out Jason Coates, Paul Feathers and associate Nicky Yarwood, who is β€˜easy to engage with’ and β€˜appreciates the needs of the client’.

Mayer Brown International LLP’s β€˜highly competent and well-resourced’ department has significant experience across a broad range of contentious and non-contentious matters, including pension investments, benefits and complex scheme litigation. The β€˜excellent’ and β€˜communicative’ Ian Wright now heads the department, with Philippa James now a consultant. Wright has been advising the trustees of the BG Pension Scheme on employer covenant and funding issues relating to the takeover of BG by Shell. Wright and James also acted for the trustees of the EDF Energy Pension Scheme on various issues following a proposal to introduce salary caps and a new defined-contribution arrangement. On the contentious side, Richard Evans acted for the trustees of the Kingfisher Pension Scheme on a class action brought before the Pensions Ombudsman regarding historic scheme merger terms and the closure of the scheme to defined-benefits accrual. β€˜Highly organised’ and β€˜a talented negotiator’, Stuart Pickford leads the contentious practice. The team was strengthened by the arrival of Jay Doraisamy from Dentons, and includes the β€˜responsive’ Andrew Block.

Norton Rose Fulbright’s β€˜very good’ and β€˜proactive’ team β€˜gives sound and appropriate advice’ on a wide range of pensions matters, including scheme closures, auto-enrolment and corporate transactions. Practice head Peter Ford, who is β€˜quick to respond’ and has β€˜thorough knowledge of all aspects of pensions’, advised the trustees of the Dover Harbour Board Pension and Life Assurance Scheme on its closure to future benefit accrual. On the contentious side, Ford also advised the trustees of the Sea Containers (1983) Pension Scheme as an expert witness in litigation concerning scheme amendment powers. Insurance expert Susan Dingwall acted for Swedish insurance companies Trygg-Hansa and Gamla Liv in a dispute over the sale of English insurance company Interlife and subsequent liabilities, involving alleged pensions mis-selling. The team includes dispute resolution practice head Deirdre Walker and Lesley Browning. Naomi Hancock has retired.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers Legal LLP’s pensions group has experience across the full gamut of pensions law matters, with particular strength in pensions indexation and bulk annuity transactions, as well as VAT and other tax matters. Recent highlights include assisting Dairy Crest in relation to a new deficit recovery plan for its scheme, as well as compliance advice regarding a member benefit option exercise. The group is headed by Oliver Reece, who specialises in regulatory matters and pensions litigation. The practice was strengthened by the arrival of Carol Dick from Squire Patton Boggs, who is regularly instructed on the pensions aspects of mergers, buy-ins and buy-outs, as well as advising on benefit changes. Director Philip Tooke, Fraser Sparks and David Farmer are also recommended.

Squire Patton Boggs’ β€˜excellent’ department has particular expertise in matters concerning local authorities, including regulatory enforcement, tax-related issues and professional negligence claims. The β€˜helpful, thorough and thoughtful’ Clifford Sims, who heads the national practice, advised the trustees of the KLM UK Pension Scheme on liability issues and other matters concerning the disposal of Cobalt Ground Solutions, a participating employer in the scheme, to Groupe Crit. London practice head Wendy Hunter and litigation head Victoria Leigh acted for the trustees of a company pension scheme regarding a tax penalty charge brought by the HMRC arising from an administrative error made by a third party pension scheme administrator. The team includes Judith Donnelly and Kirsty Bartlett.

The β€˜outstanding’ team at Stephenson Harwood is β€˜extremely knowledgeable’ in all areas of contentious and non-contentious pensions law. It has β€˜great depth’ in litigation, and is noted for its β€˜willingness to explore all options’. Philip Goodchild, who is co-head of the contentious group, represented the trustees of the Barnardo’s Staff Pension Scheme in first-of-its-kind litigation before the High Court and the Court of Appeal regarding whether scheme rules permitted the trustees to move away from the RPI. Goodchild also advised the trustees of the CGG Veritas Pension Scheme on the closure of accruals to the scheme, including negotiations with the employer. Mark Catchpole, who heads the non-contentious group, has been advising the trustees of the Bic Pension Scheme in relation to benefits payable to different classes of members. The β€˜exceptional’ Helena Berman jointly heads the contentious group with Goodchild, who β€˜knows every trick in the book in pensions professional negligence’. Jenny McKeown and senior associate Naeem Noor are also recommended.

β€˜Excellent’ boutique ARC Pensions Law β€˜really understands clients and their needs’. Anne-Marie Winton advised Phoenix Group on the pensions aspects of its Β£1bn acquisition of Abbey Life Assurance from Deutsche Bank. Rosalind Connor has been assisting Hanson Cement in various insurance issues related to its buyout of a top-up pension scheme. The team, which includes Chris Mullen, is headed by the β€˜extremely personable’ Anna Rogers, who β€˜instils confidence’ and has β€˜enormous experience’. Other clients include the trustees of the PremierFirst Vehicle Rental Pension Scheme, British American Tobacco and Canada Life, and the team also attracts regular referrals from other law firms. The firm also has an office in Leeds.

Addleshaw Goddard’s β€˜strong’ department is noted for its β€˜strong awareness of current pension issues, practical approach and access to additional specialist resources’. Department head Catherine McAllister, who β€˜gives good, clear and timely advice’, advised the NHS Business Services Authority on the re-procurement of services from private sector contractors to the NHS Pension Scheme. On the contentious side, group head Susan Garrett and Jade Murray have been acting for a high-net worth individual in various matters concerning a transfer of pension scheme assets into offshore trust structures. The team includes Rachel Rawnsley, who heads the national team, and Rachel Uttley.

Ashurst’s β€˜well-organised’ team β€˜punches above its weight’ across the full gamut of pensions matters for both corporates and trustees, with particular strength in the projects and energy arena. Practice head Marcus Fink, who is a β€˜strong negotiator’ and has β€˜an excellent understanding of relevant issues’, led advice to China General Nuclear Power Group on the pensions aspects of the construction of Hinkley Point C. Fink also advised Macquarie Capital and Greenergy on aspects of their acquisition by Navigator Terminals, including defined-benefit issues. Angela Pearson, who leads the pensions litigation team, has been acting for First Data in the high-profile Dutton v FDR Ltd case, concerning pension increases under the governing documentation of the FDR Limited Pension Scheme. Senior associates Andy Wright and Lindsey Roberts are also recommended, for non-contentious and contentious matters respectively.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP has experience acting for corporates and trustees, with particular strength in the pensions aspects of corporate transactions. The team is led by David Dennison, who specialises in assisting clients in the establishment and operation of pension arrangements, including pension plan mergers, windings up, and Pensions Ombudsman claims. Norman Russell is also recommended. Clients include Thames Water, as well as the trustees of the Roche Pension Fund and World Duty Free Group Pension Fund.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP β€˜provides a good service’ across a broad range of pensions matters, with particular expertise acting for clients in the charities and not-for-profit sector. Team head Michael Jones is regularly instructed in relation to scheme mergers, windings up, and the pensions aspects of M&A transactions, among other areas. Clients single out associate Lee Colgate, who is β€˜efficient and responsive, and knows his stuff’. Associates Esther White and Andy Williams are other names of note. Clients include City & Guilds, Westminster Abbey and the Smith & Williamson Trustees. Jane Wolstenholme is now with the Pensions Regulator.

Dentons’ team handles both contentious and non-contentious matters, with particular strength in litigation and insolvency-related cases. Practice head Elmer Doonan advised the Bank of China on the closure of its defined-benefit scheme to future accrual. On the contentious side, Doonan has been assisting the trustees of the JCB Finance Pension Scheme in a dispute concerning the application of a pension increase, and also acted for the trustees of the FDR Limited Pension Scheme in Dutton v FDR Ltd, concerning pension increases. Jay Doraisamy is now with Mayer Brown International LLP.

The β€˜very good’ team at Macfarlanes LLP provides β€˜clear, unambiguous and pragmatic advice’. β€˜Very knowledgeable’ and β€˜proactive’ department head Camilla Barry advised 3i Group on the pensions aspects of its sale of Mayborn Group to Shanghai Jahwa, including Pensions Regulator risks, price adjustment matters and the involvement of the trustees. Barry also acted for Pernod Ricard on issues arising from systemic overpayments. The team includes Andrew Barton, who specialises in pensions de-risking. Clients include Legal & General, Hogg Robinson and the trustees of the United Airlines Pension Scheme.

β€˜Always there when clients need them’, Osborne Clarke’s β€˜skilled’ lawyers have β€˜strong awareness of the market and developments in pensions law’. In addition to its specialism in public sector work and litigation, the team also handles data protection compliance matters for trustees. Practice head Jonathan Hazlett, who β€˜has a cool head’ and β€˜is strong in negotiations’, advised a number of employers (Praxair Surface Technologies, Total Produce and Hollingsworth & Vose) on the closure of their respective defined-benefit schemes to future accrual. Mark Womersley has been assisting the trustees of the Imperial Tobacco Pension Fund in relation to the participating employer’s exit from the fund, including the use of a flexible apportionment arrangement and investment matters. On the contentious side, Paul Matthews acted for the representative beneficiary of the Girls’ Day School Trust Pension Scheme on a claim brought by the previous employer concerning a transfer of assets and liabilities. Clients single out the β€˜highly competent’ and β€˜indispensable’ Brent Wright, who has β€˜a good balance of knowledge, responsiveness and interpersonal skills’. Other clients include the PPF, Transport for London and the trustees of the Kier Group Pension Scheme.

Reed Smith LLP’s team is regularly instructed on the pensions aspects of corporate transactions, with experience acting for both employers and trustees. Practice head Simon Hartley has been advising Skanska on its arrangements, covering defined-benefit, career average and defined-contribution structures. William Sutton has been assisting BT in a number of matters regarding its pension scheme, including discussions with unions. Consultant Justine Senior has been advising the trustees of the Henderson Group Pension Scheme on investment issues. Other clients include the trustees of the Pearl Group Staff Pension Scheme, Walker Greenbank Pension Scheme and Diabetes UK Pension Scheme.

Simmons & Simmons’ department has notable experience in the pensions aspects of multi-jurisdictional corporate transactions for clients in the financial sector. The department is led by Michael Wyman, who has been acting for the trustees of the Zurich UK Pension Scheme on matters including scheme documentation and the appointment of a new infrastructure debt manager. The well-regarded Danny Tsang has been acting for the trustees of the InBev Pension Plan and Stag Brewing Pension Plan on a wide range of matters, including member disputes and investment issues; recent highlights include assisting on security, amendment and employer covenant issues related to the employer’s takeover of SAB Miller. Other clients include BASF, Gallaher and GlaxoSmithKline.

Noted for its β€˜detailed approach’ and β€˜good personal relationship with long-term clients’, Bond Dickinson LLP excels in β€˜document-heavy litigation that also requires a deep understanding of how pension schemes operate’. Following Craig Monty’s retirement, the contentious team is now led by the β€˜suitably robust’ Suzanne Duff, who has β€˜a deep technical knowledge of the mechanics of pension schemes’. Martin Poore, who heads the wider practice, advised the trustees of the Sapa Pension Scheme and Life Assurance Pension Scheme on a flexible apportionment arrangement regarding defined-benefit accrual. Tracy Walsh has been assisting Procter & Gamble in various matters following the sale of its Coty business. Other clients include Carnival, Taylor Wimpey and NOW Pensions.

Clyde & Co LLP’s group has experience acting for trustees, employers and other pensions professionals, with a strong focus on trustee liability insurance matters and bulk annuities. Group head Mark Howard, who is β€˜always very responsive, meets tight deadlines and has excellent technical knowledge’, continues to act for Just on various bulk annuity transactions. He also acts for the PPF on levy and member compensation disputes, as well as investments and tax matters. Clients single out associate Paul Hodges, who β€˜works hard to find commercial solutions’ and β€˜inspires confidence in clients’. Other clients include the trustees of the Pension and Assurance Scheme, British Medical Association Pension Scheme and NHBC Pension Scheme.

DAC Beachcroft LLP’s practice is notable for its public sector experience. Practice head Neil Bhan continues to lead advice to Mitie on the pensions aspects of a number of outsourcings, including auto-enrolment, contractual and transfer value issues. Bhan also assisted Lancashire County Council in relation to the pensions aspects of the merger of its investment and administration services. Senior associate Joanna Taylor is also recommended. Other clients include Zurich Insurance, Care UK and the trustees of Christ’s Hospital Pension Scheme.

With a strong international presence, Latham & Watkins’ group regularly handles the pensions aspects of high-profile corporate transactions. It is headed by Catherine Drinnan, who has experience acting for major financial institutions and pharmaceutical companies. The team includes Stephen Brown, whose expertise includes share-based compensation and tax incentives for private equity firms.

The β€˜very good’ team at Pitmans LLP acts for both trustees and employers on a wide range of matters. Director Julian Richards, who gives β€˜clear and understandable advice’ and is β€˜attentive to clients’ positions’, specialises in assisting clients in the establishment of new schemes, legacy scheme mergers and liability reduction. Richards and national practice head Chris Netiatis have been advising the trustees of the Fire Brigades Union Pension Scheme on a number of issues arising from the employer’s establishment of a new defined-benefits scheme, including funding requirements, as well as a proposed bulk transfer of assets and liabilities from an existing scheme. Netiatis and Richards have also been assisting the trustees of the Army and Navy Club Retirement Benefit Scheme in relation to potential de-risking options. The team includes David Archer, who specialises in insolvency, professional negligence claims and trust claims.

TLT’s national practice β€˜demonstrates a depth of knowledge normally only found in larger competitors’. It is headed by the β€˜experienced and knowledgeable’ Sasha Butterworth, who has experience acting for employers and trustees on a broad range of matters, including scheme mergers and outsourcing issues. On the contentious side, Ed Fiddick has been representing the trustees of the Wandel & Goltermann Retirement Benefit Scheme in Part 8 proceedings brought against a number of defendants (including the employer) before the High Court and Court of Appeal. The team includes Chris Owen, who regularly handles high-value claims, and James Dean.

Taylor Wessing LLP is β€˜a first choice’ for pensions fraud work. The department is headed by the β€˜excellent’ and β€˜very professional’ Mark Smith, who has particular strength acting for professional trustees in pension disputes. The team also has experience in scheme closures. Clients include Pi Consulting (Trustee Services), EMC and Independent Trustee Services.

The β€˜very good’ team at Wedlake Bell LLP β€˜always gives clients proactive information about legislative changes’, and provides β€˜very practical advice’. The team is led by the β€˜very responsive’ Justin McGilloway, who has been advising the trustees of the Steamship Insurance Management Services Pension Scheme on various regulatory matters. McGilloway also acted for the trustees of the Telereal Pension Plan regarding scheme funding and closure to future accrual during a complex valuation process. Clive Weber acted for the trustees of the Buhler Pension Scheme on the sale of the employer to another company. Senior associate Alison Hills β€˜offers sensible, practical advice’.

Part of the firm’s wider corporate department, Weil, Gotshal & Manges (London) LLP’s group regularly advises on the pensions aspects of M&A transactions. Practice head Joanne Etherton advised Centerbridge and IPC on the pensions aspects of their acquisition of shares in Etrali across a number of jurisdictions. Etherton’s expertise extends to the pensions aspects of IPOs, joint ventures and insolvencies, as well as litigation.

Freeths LLP’s β€˜excellent’ team covers all areas of pensions law for clients in both the public and private sectors. Team head Parminder Latimer continues to acts for Ultra Electronics Pension Trustee Company on various issues following the scheme’s closure to future accrual. Latimer has also been acting for Australia’s kikki.K in relation to issues such as auto-enrolment and overseas secondees. The team includes litigation specialist Louise Wilson and associate Anne Taylor.

Irwin Mitchell’s team regularly assists clients on pensions tax and regulatory matters, as well as scheme amendments. Clients include PAN Trustees, Halcrow Pensioners Association and Hendry Group. London team head Penny Cogher’s recent highlights include advising on funding arrangements, auto-enrolment and the pensions aspects of M&A transactions for various trustees. Martin Jenkins leads the practice nationally.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP’s practice is β€˜excellent in every respect’, acting for employers on wide-ranging pensions matters including high-value M&A transactions and scheme closures. The β€˜commercially minded’ and β€˜responsive’ Martin McFall has been advising BicWorld in relation to valuation matters and Pensions Ombudsman claims, and has also been advising Northern Ireland’s Department for Communities on the strategy and implementation of legislation regarding Northern Ireland’s public sector pension schemes. He also led advice to Guinness Partnership on the pensions aspects of its merger with Wulvern. The team is headed by Diane Preston, who regularly advises large multinational employers on liability matters.

Valued for its β€˜prompt, succinct, commercial and sensible advice’, DWF’s pensions team has experience in a diverse range of disputes, including equalisation and insolvency cases. National department co-head Tim Green has been advising Morrisons as the sponsor on the first equalisation case brought before the Court of Appeal, Safeway Ltd v Newton. Amanda Banister – β€˜one of the best pensions lawyers in the market’ – has been representing the board of the Pension Protection Fund in the high-profile case Hampshire v PPF before the Court of Appeal and Court of Justice of the European Union regarding PPF compensation limits compliant with the EU Insolvency Directive. Green jointly heads the department with national commercial litigation head Joel Heap. Other clients include the trustees of the Caparo 1988 Pension Scheme, Nottingham City Transport Pension Fund and Swatch Group UK Pension Plan.

Boutique employment firm Signet Partners LLP handles a broad range of pensions litigation. The team is headed by Deborah Latimer, and acts for trustees, scheme members and public bodies.


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